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PH Gotte Jtl tth&^ 

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JAMAICA ;' &c. 

What prodigies can power Divine perform. 
More grand than it produces year by year, 

And all in sight of inattentive man ? 




8R AR1 





The following pages I have endeavoured, as far as possible, 
to make a mirror of the thoughts and feelings that have 
occupied my own mind during a nine months' residence on 
the charming shores of North and South Devon. There 
I have been pursuing an occupation which ahvays pos- 
sesses for me new delight, — the study of the curious forms, 
and still more curious instincts, of animated beings. So 
interesting, so attractive has the pursuit been, so unex- 
pected in many instances the facts revealed by the research, 
that I have thought the attempt to convey, with pen and 
pencil, to others the impressions vividly received by my- 
self might be a welcome service. 

Few, very few, are at all aware of the many strange, 
beautiful, or wondrous objects that are to be found by 
searching on those shores that every season are crowded 
by idle pleasure-seekers. Most curious and interesting 
animals are dwelling within a few yards of your feet, 
whose lovely forms and hues, exquisitely contrived struc- 
tures, and amusing instincts, could not fail to attract and 
charm your attention, if you were once cognizant of them. 
"But who will be our guide to such sources of interest?"' 
Deign to accept these pages as your " Hand-book" to the 
sea-side. They contain a faithful record of what actually 
has fallen under an individual's observation in a single 
season, and may therefore be assumed to present a fair 
average of what may be expected again. 

But I have not made a book of systematic zoology ; nor 


a book of mere zoology of any sort. I venture to ask 
your companionship, courteous Reader, in my Rambles 
over field and do^vn in the fresh dewy morning ; I ask 
you to listen with me to the carol of the lark, and the hum 
of the wild bee ; I ask you to stand with me at the edge 
of the precipice and mark the glories of the setting sun ; 
to watch with me the mantling tide as it rolls inward, and 
roars among the hollow caves ; I ask you to share with 
me the delightful emotions Vv^hich the contemplation of 
unbounded beauty and beneficence ever calls up in the 
cultivated mind. 

Hence I have not scrupled to sketch pen-pictures of the 
lovely and romantic scenery with which both the coasts 
of Devon abound ; and to press into my service personal 
narrative, local anecdote, and traditionary legend ; and, in 
short, any and every thing, that, having conveyed pleasure 
and interest to myself, I thought might entertain and 
please my reader. It is not the least of the advantages 
of the study of natural history, that it strengthens in us 
"the habit of wishing to discover the good and the beau- 
tiful in all that meet and surround us." 

If it should be objected that — to treat of the facts which 
science reveals to us, in any other manner than that tech- 
nical measured style, which aims not at conveying any 
pleasurable emotions beyond the mere acquisition of know- 
ledge, and is therefore satisfied with being coldly correct, 
— is to degrade science below its proper dignity, I would 
modestly reply that I think otherwise. That the increase 
of knowledge is in itself a pleasure to a healthy mind is 
surely true ; but is there not in our hearts a chord that 
thrills in response to the beautiful, the joyous, the perfect, 
in Nature ? I aim to convey to my reader, to reflect, as it 
were, the complacency which is produced in my own 
mind by the contemplation of the excellence impressed on 
everything which God has created. 


Wordsworth has said that man and nature are essen- 
tially adapted to each other, and that the mind of man is 
naturally the mirror of the fairest and most interesting 
properties of Nature. The same mighty mover of the 
human heart tells us that " Poetry is the impassioned 
expression which is the countenance of all Science." And 
all that is required to make the remotest discoveries of the 
Man of Science proper objects of the Poet's art is famili- 
arity with them, so that " the relations under which they 
are contemplated by the student be manifestly and palpably 
material to us, as enjoying and suffering beings." 
' Another eloquent writer thus speaks of the relation 
existing between Poetry and the Physical Sciences. 

" Such studies lift the mind into the truly sublime of 
nature. The poet's dream is the dim reflection of a 
distant star : the philosopher's revelation is a strong 
telescopic examination of its features. One is the mere 
echo of the remote whisper of nature's voice in the dim 
twilight ; the other is the swelling music of the harp of 
Memnon, awakened by the Sun of truth, newly risen from 
the night of ignorance."* 

Yet I would not have it supposed that I have ever 
stated the facts of Natural History in a loose, vague, 
imaginative way. Precision is the very soul of science, — 
precision in observation, truthfulness in record : and I 
should deem myself unworthy of a place among natu- 
ralists, if I were not studious to exhibit the phenomena 
of Nature with the most scrupulous care and fidelity. 
Humanum est errare : I dare not suppose I have escaped 
error ; but I am sure it is not the result of wilfulness, I 
trust it is not that of carelessness. 

Some of the investigations here touched upon are of 
higrh interest to naturalists : such as those connected with 


Hunt's ' Poetry of Science', p. 292. 


the alternation of generations, the embryology and develop- 
ment of the Zoophytes, and 'the nature and fianctions of 
their special organs. The varied forms and singular 
properties of the Thread-Capsules in the Polypes and the 
Medusae, in particular, have excited my own admiration. 

The curious observations of Sir J. G. Dalyell and other 
zoologists on the propagation of the Hydroid ZoojDhytes, 
might seem to render those recorded in this volume need- 
less; but the words of the indefatigable naturalist just 
named warrant the multiplication of observed facts. 
Speaking of the mysterious appearance of certain Medusce 
in connexion with Tuhularice^ he says, " Were similar 
instances recorded, our embarassments might be relieved ; 
for more frequent, easier, and stricter investigation being 
admitted, doubtless such a train of discovery, and thence 
the solution of what are to us the most abstruse problems, 
would follow." 

The plates have been all drawn from living nature, with 
the greatest attention to accuracy. They are twenty 
eight in number, of which twelve are printed in colours : 
they comprise about two hundred and forty figures of 
animals and their component parts, in many instances 
drawn with the aid of the microscope. 

London: March 30th, 1853. 




A Flitting to the Coast— Rival Claims of North and South De- 
von — Marychnrch selected — Beauty of Devonshire Lanes — 
Author's Outfit — Pirst exploring Jaunt — Babbieombe Sands 
— Pretty Rock-pool — Petit Tor — Jackdaws— Kestrel — Pol- 
lock-fishing on the Rocks — Boulders examined — Contents of 
a shallow Pool — Green Sea- worm — Smooth Anemone — Tiim- 
ing stones at Babbieombe — Finger- cutting Serpulae — Naked- 
gilled Mollusca— Their Elegance and Beauty— Manners in 
Captivity — Spawn of Doris — Form and Structure of the 
young — Anthea — Its Form and Colours — Voracity of an Eolis 
— Manners of Anthea — Its Mode of marching — of swimming 
— Beautiful Variety — Reflections. Paffe 1 


Petit Tor — Squirrel — Limestone Ledge — Stone-borers — Anemones 
and Sea-weeds — Clear Rock-pools — Daisy Anemone — Diffi- 
culty of procuring Specimens — Mode of Operation — A 
Metamorphosis — Description of the Species — Tentacles —  
Colours — Varieties — Habits — Structure of the Tentacles — 
Thread-shooting Capsules— Petit Tor Pools — ^Thick horned 
Anemone — Description of the Species — Suggestions of Iden- 
tity with A. coriacea — Its Habits — Beautiful Varieties — 
Changes of Figure — Deep Tide-pool — Prawn — Its Beauty of 
Colour — Changes produced by Exposure to Light. 21 


A Visit to Brixham — The Road — Character of the Coast — Berry 
Castle — Legends — Brixham — Coast Scenery — Animals of the 

f '• ^"tn „.a-» M' 


Shore— The Painted Scallop — Its Beauty — Mantle — Tentacles 
— Gem-like Eyes — Climbing Powers — Leaps — Mode of per- 
forming these misunderstood — Explanation — Functions and 
Structure of the Eyes — Structure of the Gills — Ciliary Action 
— Beauty of the Phenomenon — Oddicombe Rock-pool — Its 
Form — Contents — The Feather-star — Its Habits in Captivity — 
Reproduction of its Limbs — Watcombe — Romantic Scenery 
Sandstone Cliffs — The Sea Lemon — The Purple Dye — Mode 
of applying it — Changes of Colour — Tor Abbey Sands — Shore 
Animals — The Pholas— Its Siphons — Their Use, Structure 
and Currents — Curious Contrivance — Anstey's Cove — View 
from Babbicombe Downs — Skylark's Song — Precipice of 
Limestone — Abundance of Animals — Pleurobranchus. 44 


The Dead Man's Fingers — Appearance when contracted — when 
expanded — Beauty of the flower-like Polypes — Structure — 
Spiculse — The Polypidom — Zoophytes and Crustacea upon 
Tangle — Small Nudibranchs and their Spawn — The Angled 
Laomedea — Its medusiform Young — Appearance, Manners 
and Structure of the Embryo — Escape of one from the Vesicle 
— Regular Arrangement of the Zoophytes — The Rosy Ane- 
mone — Its . Locality — Description — Habits — Structure — The 
Snowy-disked Anemone— Peculiarities of its Locality — De- 
scription — The Snake-locked Anemone — Description — Fare- 
well to South Devon. 76 


llfracombe — Beautiful Scenery— Walk to Watermouth — Hele — 
Hockey Lane — Fine Sea-view— Daws — Doves — Charms of 
Spring — "Watermouth — Curious mode of Fishing— Grove of 
Flowers — Rabbits — Sharp Rocks — Gemmaceous Anemone — 
Living Madrepores — Their Localities — Appearance — Mode of 
detaching them — Their Structure— The Plates — Beauty of 
the Animal— Protrusion of the soft Parts— Their Translu- 
cency — Analogy with the Anemone — Brilliancy of Colours — 
Tentacles — Cilia on their Surface — The globose Heads — The 
Tentacles are tubular — Imprisoned Animalcule — Sensibility 


of the Madrepore to Light —Experiments in feeding them — 
Sense of Taste — Keproduction of Parts — The Frilled Bands 
— Their Use — Their Structure — ^Thread- Capsules — Singular 
Forms of these Organs — The Madrepore easily preserved 
alive. 101 


A Walk to Hele — Bird's-eye View of the Harbour — Quay Fields 
— Lion Rock — Hele Strand — A threatened Shipwreck — Eu- 
cratea — Description — Mode of Growth — Forrn of the Cell — 
Structure of the Polype — Tentacles — Digestive System — Mus- 
cular Bands — Evanescence of the radiate Character — Root- 
Thread — Snake-head Coralline — Frill — Vermicular Organs — 
Door and Hinge — Ciliated Cellularia — Cells — SpLaes — Birds' 
Heads — Their Motions — Slimy Laomedea — Structure of a 
Sertularian Zoophyte — Its Contraction — Marginal Folds of 
the Cell — Researches in Gastronomy — Anemones cooked — 
Eaten — Commended — Best mode of preparing them — Anthea 
tried. 128 


Charm of the Sea-side — Watching the receding Tide — The Lion 
Rock — Approach of Evening — Its Accompaniments — The 
Warty Cycloum — Harvey's Syrinx — Capstone Hill — Its Pro- 
menade — Precipitous Walks — Noble Prospects — Sunset — 
Bird's-eye View— The Welsh Coast — Flowers — The Summit 
— Inland View — Seaward Rocks — Wildersmouth — A fatal 
Accident — The Gemmed Anemone — Description — Habits- 
Production of the Young — Sea- Spider — Black Sand -worm — 
A second Visit to Watermouth — Flowers — A Crab at Home 
— A walk to Lee — Beautiful Valley — Character of the Cove 
— Stone^turning — The Worm Pipe-fish — Its Form and 
Colours— Manners in Captivity — Intelligence — Appearance 
of Disease — Surgical Aid — Difficulties of Microscopical 
Sketching, 154 


Rock-pools — Their Abundance— Southey's Description — Its truth 
to Nature — Their Loveliness — Chondrus — Its brilliant Reflec- 


tions — The Branching Coryne — A Parasite — A Beautiful 
Sea-weed — Structure of the Zoophyte — 'Origin of its Name — 
Tentacles — Their Structure — Egg Capsules — Escape of the 
Eggs — The Bird's-head Coralline — Elegant Shape of the Poly- 
pidom — Advantage of studying living Animals — The Cell 
— The Polype — Its Organization — Muscles — Economy in 
God's Works — A Populous Stone — Enumeration of its Te- 
nants — Reflections — God's Purpose in Creation — The hopeful 
Future — The Sessile Coryne — The Belgian Pedicellina— Its 
Form and Structure — Production of its Young — Its Habits 
— Its Affinities — The Slender Pedicellina — Its singular Bulb. 



Metamorphosis of Lepralia — Appearance of the Gemmule — 
Budding of the Cell-spines — Development of the Polype — 
Growth —The Three-headed Coryne — Singular Use of its 
Disk — Beania — Coralline Light — Lime Light — Tubulipora — 
Marine Vivaria — The Principle explained — Elegance of Sea- 
plants — Facilities for Study — Details of Experiments — 
Mode of procuring the Sea-weeds — Success — Anticipations 
— A curious Coincidence — Sponge- Crystals — ^Their elegant 
Form — Immense Numbers — Mutual Entanglement — Ciliated 
Sponge — Its crystal Coronet — Powers of Restoration. 218 


Respiration and Circulation — A Transparent Ascidia — Organs of 
Sight — Play of the Gills — Ciliary Waves — The Heart — Cours- 
ing of the Blood-globules — Reversal of the Current — " Na- 
ture," what is it ? — The Praise of God — Luminositv of the 
Sea — A Charming Spectacle — Light-producing Zoophytes — 
Luminosity a Vital Function — Noctiluca, a Luminous Ani- 
malcule — Its Structure — Production of its Embryo — The 
Slender Coryne — Description — Parasites, 240 


Hillsborough— Meaning of its Name — Its Grandeur — Its Flowers 
— Commanding Prospects — View Westward — Inland — East- 
ward — Seaward — Formation of a Beach — A Rock-slip — An- 


tliea--Its Tentacles retractile — Their Structure — Thread- 
Capsules — A Summer Morning "Walk — Autumnal Flowers — 
Langley Open — The Hangman — Curious Legend — Coast 
Scenery — Lee — A Ship's Travels — Solitude — Caves — Sponges 
— The Hispid Fiustra — Its Appearance and Structure — 
Expansion of its Bells — Ciliary Action — A miniature Whirl- 
pool — Visit to Braunton — Carn Top — Tragical Legend — 
Score Valley — Squirrels — ^Trentistowe — "White Bindweed — 
Oak Hedges — Reaping — Braunton — Curious monumental 
Inscription — Braimton Burrows — Sea-side Rocks — Marine 
Animals — Rare Plants on the Cliffs — Snails — Botany of the 
Burrows — Insects — Shells — The Feather Plumularia — Its 
Egg- Vesicles — Young Polypes — Their Development from 
Planules — Structure of the Polype. 261 


A Visit to Smallmouth Caves — Chasm formed by a Rock-slip — 
View of Samson's Bay — Samson's Cave — Smallmouth — 
Natural Tunnel — View of Combmartin Bay — Brier Cave — 
Abundance of Animals — The Twining Campanularia — Form 
of its Cells — The Polypes — The Egg-Vesicles — Birth of a 
Medusoid — Its Form and Structure — Tentacles — Eyes — Cir- 
culating Canals^ Alternation of Generations — Ride towards 
Barricane — A Showery Journey — Lee — Damage Farm — A 
romantic Dell — Devonshire Wells — Rockham Bay — White 
Pebbles — Morte Stone — Ship-wreck — Gallant Exploit — Morte 
— Tomb of De Tracy — Approach of a Storm — Kestrels — 
Parasites on a Crab — The Bristle Plumularia — Birth of its 
Young— Dissolution — The Lobster's Horn Coralline — Second- 
ary Cells — Suggestion of their Purpose — Egg- Vesicles — 
Birth of the Planule — Its Development into the Polype-form 
—Death. 292 


Capstone Spout-Holes — Purple Hue of low" Rocks — Tadpole of a 
Mollusk — Its Habits — Visit to Barricane — A Beach of Shells — 
Rock-pools — Their Contents — Antiopa — Its Spawn — Hatch- 
ing of the Embryos — Immense Number in one Brood — The 
Torrs — Bloody Field — Flowers— View fi.-om the Cliff'— Torr 


Point — Rocky Staircase — White Pebble Bay — Tide-pools — 
Maiden-hair Fern — The Precipice — A curious Medusoid — 
Medusoid Fishing — Mode of Operation — Difficulties — Thau- 
mantias pilosella — Its Luminosity — Description of its Struc- 
ture—The Umbrella— The Sub-Umbrella— The Peduncle— 
The Radiating Vessels — The Ovaries — The Tentacles — Pig- 
ment-cells — Eyes. 320 


Rapparee Cove — Strange Gravel — Its singular Origin — ^The 
Glassy ^quorea — Its Form and Structure — The Forbesian 
^quorea — The Bathing-Pool — Medusse therein — Description 
of a new Species — Its Habits — Luminousness — Distinctive 
Characters — The Ruby Medusa — Its first Occurrence — Wig- 
mouth — Production of the Gemmules — Their Appearance — 
Motion of the Turris — Metamorphosis of the Gemmules — 
Their Polype-form — Goodness of God in the Beautiful — A 
Christian's Interest in Nature — The Redeemed Inheritance — 
The Crystalline Johnstonella — Its Beauty — Its Doubtful Affi- 
nities — The Starry Willsia — Parasitic Leech — Thread-Cap- 
sules — Nature of these Organs. 338 


This Coast favourable for Oceanic Productions — The Red-lined 
Medusa — Its Form and Structure — The Eyes — The Fur- 
belows — A parasitic Shrimp — Its supposed Young — Beauty 
of the Medusa — Its Prehensile Powers — Capture of Prey — 
Curious Mode of eating — Experiments — New Use of the 
Furbelows — Development of the Eggs — Their Structure — 
Tlu-ead' Capsules — Synonymy — The White Pelagia — The 
Mantis Shrimp — Its spectral Figure and strange Actions — 
Its Weapons — The Caddis Shrimp — The Tiny Oceania- 
Busk's Thaumantias— The Fairy's Cap. 363 


The Maritime Bristle-tail — Its Nocturnal Habits — Discovery of 
its Retreats — Its Companions — The Scarce Polynoe — Its 
Armoury of Weapons — A rocky Bay — Romantic Incident — 


Chivalrous Self-sacrifice — The Tunnels — Crewkhorne Cavern 
—The Torr Cliffs— Precipitous Path— Torr Point— Solitude— 
The Scarlet and Gold Madrepore — Scene of its Discovery — 
Description of the Species — Its Microscopical Structure — The 
Stony Skeleton — Thread- Capsules of Actinia — The Club- 
bearing Medusa — Entanglement of Air — Structure of the 
Tentacles— The Eyes. 389 


Various Effects of Light on Scenery — •Ode to Light — The Sabella 
— Its Tube — Its Crown of Plumes — Eatal Attack — Discovery 
of more Specimens — Laborious Mode of Procuring them — 
The Young — Reproduction of the Crown — The Corynactis — 
A low Spring-tide — The Tunnel Rocks — Discovery of the 
Species — Its Eorm, Structure, and Colours — Manner of taking 
Food — Thread- Capsules — Their elaborate Structure — Propul- 
sion of the Thread — Identification of the Species — The *Pur- 
ple-spotted Anemone — Its Locality and Manners — Its Form 
and Colours — Thi-ead- Capsules — Nature of these Organs — 
Systematic List of Zoophytes — Conclusion. 412 


Marine Vivaria — Facts Established — Ozone — Its Mode of Action 
— Application of Prmciples — Aquaria in the Zoological Gar- 
dens — Parlour Aquarium. 439 






Actinia bellis, &c. 


Pleurobranchus, &c. 


Alcyonium, &c. 


Laomedea geniculata 


Caryophyllia Sniithii 


Eucratea chelata, &c. 


Cellularia ciliata, &c. 


Actinia gemmacea, &c. 


Coryne ramosa 


Cellularia avicularia 


Antennularia antennina 




Lepralia, &c. 




Clavellina, &c. 


Coryne stauridia, &c. 


Plumularia pinnata 




Medusoid of Campanularia 


Willsia, &c. 


Thaumantias Corynetes 


Medusoid of Coryne, &c. 


-^quorea vitrina 


^quorea Forbesiana 


Johnstonella Catharina 


Balanophyllia, &c. - 


Chrysaora. - 


Thread- capsules 

To face 
























• - 































( Frojitispiece 






A Flitting to the Coast — Rival Claims of North and South De- 
von — Mary church selected— Beauty of Devonshire Lanes — 
Author's outfit — First exploring jaunt — Babbicombe sands 
— Pretty Rock-pool — Petit Tor — Jackdaws — Kestrel — Pol- 
lock-fishing on the Rocks — Boulders examined — Contents of a 
shallow Pool — Green Sea-worm — Smooth Anemone — Turn- 
ing stones at Babbicombe — Finger- cutting Serpulse — Na- 
ked-gilled Mollusca — Their elegance and beauty — Manners 
in Captivity — Spawn of Doris — Form and Structure of the 
young — Anthea — Its Form and Colours — Voracity of an Eolis 
— Manners of Anthea — Its Mode of marching — of swimming 
— Beautiful Variety — Reflections. 

"You are seriously ill, Henry," said my wife; "you 
have been in the study a great deal too much lately ; 
you must throw it all up, and take a trip into the 

"0 no," said I, "not bad enough for that, I hope ; a 
few days' inaction, with God's blessing, will set me 
right. I do not want to leave London." 

But I got worse ; sitting by the parlour fire, doing 
nothing, was dreary work ; and it was not much 
mended by traversing the gravel walks of the garden 



in my great coat: there was nothing particularly 
refreshing in the sight of frost-hitten creepers and 
chrysanthemums in January. To walk ahout the 
streets in the suburbs, or even in the city, was dreary 
too, when there was no object in view, nothing to 
do in fact but to spend the time. But, after all, 
the dreariness was in myself ; I was thoroughly 
unwell, overworked, and everybody said there must 
be a rustication. The Doctor added the casting vote: 
— "Bad case of nervous dyspepsia; you must give 
up study, and go out of town." I succumbed. 

"Now where shall it be ? Leamington — Ton- 
bridge Wells — Clifton?" No, none of these; since 
I must go, it shall be to the sea-shore ; I shall 
take my microscope with me, and get among the 
shells and nudibranchs, the sea-anemones and the 
corallines. What part so promising as the lovely 
garden of England, fair Devonshire ?" 

Devonshire then was decided on. But North or 
South Devon ? The Bristol or the British Chan- 
nel ? Ilfracombe or Torquay ? Each had its claims 
for preference, each was unknown, each was said to 
be "comely in its kind;" South Devon I knew 
(by report) to be rich in its marine zoology ; North 
Devon was described as magnificent in scenery. 
Each too had its objections. The South was too 
relaxing for a nervous complaint ; the North was 
out of the world, and difficult of access in winter. 
So nearly were the pros and cons balanced, that 
the very evening before the time determined on for 
starting left the point suh judice, when a friend calling, 
a Torquay man, settled it. 


"Why not try Marycliurcli ? It is very liigh, 
and the air is bracing. Moreover you will be within 
an easy walk of the shore at several points ; the 
coast round is indented with coves and inlets ; 
most of it is very rocky, and will give you plenty 
of hollows and dark pools, full of sea-weeds and 
zoophytes, interchanged now and then with sandy 
and shingly beaches. Try the South first; yon 
will then be as well situated as now for reaching 
the North coast, should the air not suit you." 

The counsel seemed sound and seasonable. The 
next day the luggage was sent off to the Torquay 
station, and we all, (wife, self, and little naturalist in 
petticoats) followed by easy stages. 

And very pleasant it was to us to find ourselves at 
the end of January in the midst of the "Devonshire 
Lanes." No frosts had as yet sullied the verdure of 
the hedge banks, or nipped the shrubs in the sweet 
cottage gardens. Indeed frost seems here almost 
unknown, if we may judge by the myrtles dressed in 
their glossy foliage of deepest green, reaching up to 
the eaves of the houses, and the fuchsias, not always 
of the most common varieties, whose thick roughened 
trunks have evidently braved the open air through 
many winters. As we trudged, despite the tenacious 
red mud that lay ankle-deep, along the narrow lanes 
around Marychurch and West-hill, lanes that wei'e 
even now dark with the tall hedges, and the roadside 
trees that met over our heads, we felt that we had left 
the reign of winter far behind us. The high sloping 
banks were fringed every where with the long pendent 
fronds of the hart's tongue fern ; the broad arrowy 


leaves of the wake-robin, glossy and black-spotted, 
and great tufts of the fetid iris, a rare plant elsewhere, 
were springing up from all the ditches. Strange warm 
damp lanes, so suited for lovers' evening walks, (not 
exactly at this season to be sure) winding and turning 
about, ever opening into some other lane, that again 
presently into another, and all leading apparently 
nowhere, — with the little birds hopping fearlessly 
about the hedge-tops and the trees overhead, the robin 
sweetly singing, the tiny gold-crest peeping into the 
crevices of the ivy, the yellow hammer and the chaf- 
finch in their gay plumage twittering almost within 
reach of your hand ! And ever and anon we pass 
some thatched cottage in the sheltered bottom, its 
little garden in front trimly kept, and still bright with 
the blossoms of the chrysanthemums, the trailing roses 
over the porch displaying a lingering flower or two, 
and the indispensable myrtle peeping in at the cham- 
ber lattice ; while at one of the lower windows sits the 
venerable dame in a snowy cap of ancient fashion, 
with horn spectacles on her wrinkled but gentle face, 
reading her large Bible. Early violets were beginning 
to peep from their lowly retreats, and very soon we 
found them in plenty, and the delicate pale yellow 
primroses quickly bespangled every bank. 

It was in the midst of such rural scenes, and yet 
within a quarter of an hour's walk of the boundless 
sea, that I set myself down for a temporary sojourn. 
I had brought with me a plain but good working 
compound microscope, a small simple one, and a few 
books essential to the littoral naturalist. Among 
them were Cuvier's and Jones's Animal Kingdom, 


Forbes' Star-fishes and Naked-Eyed Medusae, John 
ston's Zoophytes, SjDonges, and Introduction to Con- 
chology, Yarrell's Birds, and Fishes, Alder and 
Hancock's Nudibranch Mollusca, Swainson's Mala- 
cology, Grant's Outline of, and Owen's Lectures on, 
Comparative Anatomy, Audouin and M. Edwards 
Littoral de la France, Harvey's Marine Algse, and his 
beautiful little Sea-side Book, and a few minor works 
on the same or kindred subjects. I was not long in 
discovering that with such aids to inquiry, an ample 
field was before me, and that I should not lack abun- 
dant materials of entertainment and instruction for 
myself, and, as I hope, for others also. 

It was on the very first afternoon, that is to say, on 
the 30th of January, 1852, that I set forth to see what 
promise the shore might afi'ord. A zigzag road, such 
as a carriage can traverse, leads down the steep from 
Babbicombe to the beach below. The beautiful coast 
stretches away before us ; first appear the blufi" red 
headlands from Petit Tor northward, in distinct pro- 
minence, but each becoming more dim than its prede- 
cessor: the white houses of Exmouth shiniug in the 
full afternoon sun on the blue hazy shore ; thence the 
blue becomes fainter, more hazy and watery, and the 
band of coast itself slenderer, till at length it can only 
be discerned by the eye carefully tracing it from the 
visible part onward. In front expanded 

The peaceful main, 
One molten mirror, one illumin'd plane 
Clear as the hlue, sublime, o'erarching sky. 


The rocks to the right presented little to reward 


the toil of scrambling over their projecting masses, 
hut I ohserved strong iron bars driven perpendicularly 
into the crevices here and there, to which, in one case, 
a line was affixed that ran out into the sea : this I 
was told was attached to a herring-net, set across the 
tide ; though few herrings are yet come in. On the 
sand and shingle were several young dog-fish ; pro- 
bably hauled in the seine, and thrown out to putrefy 
as useless. Towards Oddicombe on the left, in 
climbing and crawling around the face of the rough 
cliff, I found a pretty tide-pool, a delightful httle 
reservoir, nearly circular, a basin about three feet wide 
and the same deep, full of pure sea-water, quite still, 
and as clear as crystal. From the rocky margin and 
sides, the puckered fronds of the Sweet Oar-weed, 
(Laminaria saccharinaj sprang out, and gently 
drooping, like ferns from a Avail, nearly met in the 
centre; while other more delicate sea-weeds grew 
beneath their shadow. Several sea- anemones of a 
kind very different from the common species, more 
flat and blossom-like, with slenderer tentacles set 
round like a fringe, were scattered about the sides : 
when touched they contracted, more and more forcibly, 
into a whitish grey tubercle. 


Feb. Srd. — When the tide was nearly at ebb, I 
walked down to the cove at Petit Tor. The red 
earth, so abundant hereabout as to tinge the clothes 
of the peasants, the coats of the numerous donkeys, 
and the wool of the sheep, of a rufous tint, was satu- 
rated by the recent rains, and formed a tenacious mud. 


very unpleasant to walk in, of wliicli the little lane 
leading from Marycliurch has quite enough. This 
passed, however, a gate leads out on the down at the 
summit of the cliffs, whence, as the day was most cloud- 
lessly hrilli ant, the prospect out upon the sea was mag- 
nificent. There was scarcely any wind, the atmosphere 
was very clear, and the transparent blue of the water 
sparkling in the sun was particularly summery The 
mossy turf of the down was scarcely firm enough to 
sustain the tread on the slope, hut continually slid 
away beneath the feet from the ruddy mud, affording 
a treacherous footing in the descent, which as the 
pathways overthe cliffs frequently pass close to the edge 
of tremendous precipices, is not without danger. A 
zigzag road, however, leads down to the beach through 
the gully, or chine, ( as it would be called in the Isle 
of Wight) which bears the name of Petit Tor, though 
this name belongs of right to the bluff promontory 
on the south of it. The object of the road appears to 
have been the transport of the beautiful variegated 
marbles, huge blocks of which, some of them sawn and 
marked with numbers, were lying beside the way at 
different points, ready for removal. By running, 
jumping and sliding I arrived at the bottom, and paused 
awhile to look around. The ruined walls of what was 
once probably a fisherman's cottage, built in the curious 
manner peculiar to the neighbourhood, of rough frag- 
ments of friable limestone, set in a strong red mortar, 
stand on the declivity ; and in the midst of the beach, 
starts up from the very shingle a pointed columnar mass 
of rough conglomerate rock about 60 feet high, remind- 
ing one of our common idea of the pillar of salt. The 

8 jackdaws' manceuvres. 

back of the cove is like the receding slope of an 
amphitheatre, on the grassy sides of which, half-covered 
with furze-bushes, and tufts of the stinking Iris, and 
brakes of fern, a few sheep were grazing. On the 
northern side the cliffs of red conglomerate rise to a 
great height ; and on looking up to the summit my eye 
was caught by the Jackdaws, which were playing there, 
and I sat down on a mass of rock partly hidden by fern 
and brambles to watch their movements. A flock of 
fifty or sixty, sometimes more, sometimes fewer, were 
flying about a chasm near the lofty inaccessible summit, 
now and then alighting in the fissures, then shooting 
down into the air to join their comrades' play. They 
uttered a short querulous call, more sharp and impa- 
tient than the caw of the rook, and occasionally two 
would engage in a sort of conversation, a rapid reite- 
ration of the note. Now they disappeared one by one, 
and presently they would come trooping round the 
seaward face of the headland in little companies, as if 
assembling by agreement, their glossy backs and wings 
gleaming in the bright sun, play awhile in the air 
about the chasm, then go again. The rough face of 
the rock was partially concealed by large patches, 
green and yellow, of ivy, reaching, irregularly and 
interruptedly, from the very base to the top ; in the 
upper parts of this, the daws would frequently rest 
awhile, but not long. A Hawk, which from its size, 
and the dark margin of its tail I took to be the Kestrel, 
was hovering among the troop ; its superior ease and 
grace of flight were very observable, though the daws 
are birds of powerful wing. The latter were apparently 
unfavourable to the intrusion of the suspicious stranger; 


for they set upon him in a troop and chased him away, 
though not far. Presently a Gull came by and sailed 
away straight out to sea for a long distance, then 
turned, as if to challenge the terricolous daws to try 
an ocean-flight with him. 

The beach ends northward in a wilderness of boul- 
ders, enormous masses of red conglomerate detached 
from the precipice above, and piled in confusion upon 
each other, — Pelion upon Ossa, and Ossaupon Olym- 
pus. This sort of composite rock readily yields to the 
action of the weather, and hence the fallen masses 
take rounded forms. On one of the most prominent 
stood a gentleman, angling ; I scrambled over to him, 
and learned that he was fishing for pollock ; they come 
in shoals and bite readily ; but it was rather too early 
in the season now. 

Great boulders like these do not generally afford a 
very favourable field to the naturalist ; where, however, 
one is resting partially on others, so as to allow an 
examination of its under side, this is sometimes pro- 
ductive, provided it be not far from low-water mark. 
In a dark cavernous recess here I found attached to 
the overhanging surface of a huge mass, a specimen, 
as big as a dinner-plate, of that curious dense sponge 
discovered by my esteemed friend Mr. Bowerbank, and 
named by him Pachymatisma JoJmstonia. In another 
similarly situated, was a numerous colony of the 
common smooth Sea-anemone {Actinia mesemlrij- 
anthemum), composed, in about equal numbers, of two 
pretty varieties, the one a fine dark red, the other a 
clear grass-green. 

I went back to the limestone ridge at the southern 


extremity of the cove and amused myself with examin- 
ing the little shallow tide-pools, one or two inches 
deep, regularly paved with small mascles, and fringed 
with dwarf fuci, ulv<2, Rhodyme?iia palmata, and 
coralline, — representatives of the'olive, green, red, and 
stony sea- weeds, all gathered together, hut all stunted 
and poor, heing so high ahove low-water line. Seve- 
ral of a long slender many-footed sea-worm fPhyllo- 
doce lamelligera), looking like a centipede, but of a 
bright green colour, were lithely crawling and turning 
among the sea- weeds and muscles, and were difficult 
to get hold of, from their length and slipperiness. 

These shallow pools, the sides of the rocks, the 
boulders, and the small stones left dry by the tide, are 
all studded with the common Smooth Anemone (Act. 
mesemhryanthenmmj in great abundance. The most 
frequent variety is of a rich deep red, sometimes 
brightening into blood-red, but more ordinarily deep- 
ening into a full brownish purple or liver-colour. Less 
common is the olive variety, likewise varying in tint 
according as the green or the brown element prepon- 
derates. And not rarely we see specimens, usually of 
large size and of oval outline, with the ground-colour 
dark-red, marked with numerous and close-set green 
dots. This species is the most careless of exposure 
to the air of all our native zoophytes; we see them 
adhering to the rocks almost up to high-water mark, 
so that the periods during which these are left dry are 
considerably longer than their immersions. Yet it is 
only while covered with water, that they expand their 
beautiful flower-like disks and petaloid tentacles, and 
consequently obtain nutriment. And even when we 



look at such as are immersed, we quite as frequently 
see them closed as open. 

Southey has poetically described the influence of the 
returning tide upon these charming creatures. 

Meantime with fuller reach and stronger swell, 
Wave after wave advanced ; 
Each following billow lifted the last foam 
That trembled on the sand with rainbow-hues : 
The living flower that, rooted to the rock. 
Late from the thinner element 
Shrank down within its purple stem to sleep, — 
Xor feels the water, and again 
Awakening, blossoms out 
All its green anther-necks. 

Thalaba, xii. 3. 


Feb. ISlh. — The beach atBabbicombe, which, when 
the tide is in, is composed entirely of pebbles, changes 
lower down to larger stones, and at extreme low water 
presents only rounded and flattened blocks from 
six inches to a yard in width. They are invested 
with a clothing of green weeds, and are hence slippery 
to walk on, and when their drapery is flagged and 
half withered by the sun, are unpleasing to the eye. 
It struck me that I might find something under them, 
however, and I spent an hour or two turning them 
over, not without some loss of blood, for their edges 
and under sides were crowded with the shells of 
Serj)idce, the little projecting* points of which over 
the mouth were as sharp as needles, and cut and tore 
my fingers continually. But I was rewarded by a 
good many of those elegant creatures, the naked 


gilled Mollusca, which were adhering to the surface of 
the loose stones, awaiting the return of tide. The large 
grey Eolis pajnllosa, the little Doris hilamellata, and 
a more minute buff-coloured species of Doris, I took 
here ; and the pretty green Polycera ocellata was nu- 
merous ; but the most abundant, and at the same 
time the most lovely species was the exquisite Eolis 
coronata, with tentacles surrounded by membranous 
coronets, and with crowded clusters of papillae, of 
crimson and blue that reflect the most gem-like 

I brought home my captives and placed them in a 
vase of sea-w^ater to observe their manners. When out 
of water they exhibit nothing of their peculiar beauty, 
and if the searcher has not a sharp eye, he may 
readily overlook them ; they look like little shapeless 
lumps of fibrous jelly. But on being dropped into 
water, no sooner do they feel the bottom and begin 
to crawl, than all the clustering branchiae are separated 
and w^aved, the long oral tentacles are thrown from 
side to side, and the pellucid animal glides quickly 
along with a graceful even motion. Both the species 
of Eolis bristle up their branchise and throAv them 
forward when irritated. One or two of my specimens 
had lost some of their tufts of these organs, w^hich 
were evidently sprouting again. I think that they 
lost some while in captivity. 

E. coronata was very active, continually gliding 
with a uniform motion around the sides of the vessel, 
or climbing about the numerous branching sea-weeds, 
that were growing in it. They frequently crawled 
close to the edge of the water, but never came actually 


out, tlioiigli tliey occasionally floated at the surface 
by means of the expanded foot, back-downward. 

Polycera ocellata on the other hand is fond of 
coming out of the water, and of remaining at the 
edge of the vessel, when it looks like a little ball of 
olive-coloured jelly. It frequently floats by the 
foot, and is capable of a slow progression in this 
manner. If pushed under water, it retracts its bran- 
chiae and tentacles, incurves the edges of the foot, 
and sinks rapidly to the bottom ; but soon recovers 
its equanimity, and crawls up to the summit of the 
nearest sea-weed, or up the sides of the reservoir to 
the surface again. 

Doris tuherculata slowly glides round and round 
the vessel just beneath the surface, now and then 
lifting and puckering up the edge of the cloak, and 
allowing the air to bathe the body. 

Doris hilamellata, of which there were three in the 
vessel, was very social in confinement, continually 
finding out one another, and crowding close up toge- 
ther. They crawl round the pan, generally resting 
close to the surface, often with the mantle a little 
raised, so that the air may reach the body. 

Feb. 22nd. — The Doris hilamellata laid a ribbon 
of spawn attached to the side of the pan almost at 
the surface of the water. It adhered bv one edo^e 
and formed an imperfect spire or cup, the ribbon 
being bent upon itself; the upper edge or brim 
leaning a little outward, and being puckered. The 
general substance is white and opaque, owing to a 
vast number of minute eggs, enveloped in a clear 
jelly. The colour therefore appears uniform except 



that a clear line runs round just within the edge, 
caused by a narrow space free from eggs The ova, 
though numerous and close-set, occupy only the cen- 
tral portions of the hand (seen in section), there 
being a considerable space of transparent jelly with- 
out them, on each surface. The Doris was disturbed, 
and seems to have finished prematurely, the latter 
part of the ribbon being distorted. 

Within a day or two after this, the other two of the 
same species laid their spawn ; it had much the same 
appearance as the first, that of a long ribbon irregu- 
larly bent or folded on itself ; that of the largest is 
above f ths of an inch high, and 1 inch long. 

Early in March I observed, similarly attached to 
the overhanging surface of a rock between tideuiarks, 
a ribbon of like appearance, but much larger ; about 
fths of an inch high. Doubtless this was the spawn 
of D. tuherculata : it hung down in a wet flaccid 
manner, being left uncovered by the recess of the 

On the 19th of March I cut off a small piece of the 
first ribbon of spawn (laid Feb. 22) and examined it 
beneath the microscope. I found that the young 
were fully formed, each enclosed in a globular q^^, 
perfectly transparent and colourless. The young 
Doris, unlike the adult, which is a naked slug, inhabits 
a transparent shell, formed like that of the nautilus, 
from the mouth of which project two large fleshy cir- 
cular disks set round with long cilia. These latter 
organs were in constant and vigorous vibration, by 
the motion of which each little animal revolved freely 
in its egg-shell, incessantly turning upon its centre 


in every direction. Sometimes one would suddenly 
suspend the motion of its cilia, as if tired ; then after 
having rested a few moments, put forth one cilium in a 
cautious manner, then another, and in a moment the 
whole were again in vibration, and the little embryos 
was gyrating in its giddy dance. 

The embryos remained active in the piece of the 
ribbon under the microscope, for several days, but 
did not appear to increase in development, nor were 
any hatched. They then became motionless, and 
were doubtless dead. 


Feb. 2S)rl. Under a stone at low water mark I 
found a fine specimen of Anthea cereus, attached to 
the under surface. I kept it some days in the viva- 
rium, where its appearance was very beautiful. The 
body is about \\ inch thick, and the same in height, 
of a purplish-brown hue marked with numerous lon- 
gitudinal narrow bands of dull lilac, each band mar- 
gined with darker colour. The tentacles when fully 
expanded are 1^ inch long, and about a line in thick- 
ness at the base, tapering gradually ; of a brilliant 
satiny light-green, with the tips purplish-red. The 
tentacles were contractile but not retractile, and were 
never regularly radiating, but mingled irregularly in 
a tortuous manner in all directions. They were adhe- 
sive to any foreign substance on all parts of their 
surface The body was frequently distended by the 
imbibition of water; when it became more pellucid. 

In the same pan I had three individuals of Eolis 


papulosa. One of these was rather large, the others 
scarcely half grown. One day I found the largest 
eating the tentacles of the Ant/iea, and when I at- 
tempted to pull it away, it held so firmly that the 
mouth was almost everted. Soon afterwards I again 
found it at the same work of destruction, and one of 
the smaller specimens was attacking the unfortunate 
Anthea also. They were eager and fierce, stretching 
forward to their prey from their points of attachment, 
to which they adhered only by the extremity of the 
foot, and frequently erecting and reversing their 
crowded branchiae. On being again removed they 
again returned, though from a considerable distance; 
so that whenever I looked at the pan, I almost always 
found one or all of the Eolides devouring their victim, 
so much larger, though more sluggish, than them- 
selves. The tentacles when gnawed and torn, became 
shrivelled : some of them were torn awav bv the 
Eolides^ and a large quantity of viscid albuminous 
matter was discharged in the form of iiTegular threads 
or webs, attached to the surrounding objects. The 
process went on from day to day On one occasion, 
one of the Eolides attacked a magnificent Actinia 
crassicor7iis in the same vessel, and had eaten a hole 
in its side as large as a pea before I discovered it. 

A?ithea cereus is abundant around Tor Abbey 
Headland, inhabiting in great numbers the shallow 
pools in the red sandstone and conglomerate, which 
occur on the broad surface left exposed at low water. 
They are principally of the variety with plain grey ten- 
tacles, but specimens of the more beautifid variety 
described above, having those organs of a satiny 


green with rosy tips, are sufficiently numerous. They 
are content to be covered with a few inches of water, 
their bases resting on the rough bottom, in which 
they seem to be imbedded to a slight depth ; but this 
is probably the effect of the animals' choosing a hollow 
of suitable dimensions ; for I do not believe that their 
muscular base has any faculty of eroding the rock. 
When half-a-dozen or more are seen inhabiting a small 
pool, their appearance is curious, and not a little 
beautiful. The great mass of long and slender tenta- 
cles are not arranged, like those of other Actinicc, in 
circles of divergent rays, but contorted and inter- 
twined in all directions, like the dishevelled snake- 
locks of Medusa's head. In the beautiful lines 
already cited from Southey, I think he had this 
species in view when he speaks of the "green anther 
necks" ; but the '^purple stem" of the sleeping one 
was most likelv the common Smooth Anemone. 
Perhaps he thought that they were the same species 
in different conditions. 

In a large vase of sea-water Antheas actions are as 
peculiar as its appearance. It is fond of climbing up 
the sides of the glass, a feat which it accomplishes 
Avith a considerable measure of (comparative) activity. 
It glides up by the broad fleshy base, pretty much in 
the same manner as a gasteropod does by its expand, 
ed foot ; and yet the process is not exactly the same. 
The power which Anthea has of inflating portions of 
its body, swelling them out in large tumid lobes 
separated by deep sulci from the rest of the circum- 
ference, assists it in crawling. We will suppose the 
Anthea resting on the bottom of the vessel, when it 


feels a desire to mount the sides of the glass. Push- 
ing out a great inflated lobe towards that side, the 
sole of which is free froiQ the surface, it takes hold of 
the glass with the edge of the lobe, and when the 
contact is firm, relaxing its former hold, it slowly 
drags forward the body, until the lobe is again lost in 
the general circumference, or even till the body pro- 
jects in two smaller lobes, one on each side of the 
principal one. The base being now made firmly to 
adhere, again the lobe is freed, and again protruded, 
and the same process is repeated until the animal is 
satisfied with the position that it has gained. Some- 
times this is at mid-height, the intertwined tentacles 
streaming loosely down by their own w^eight. At 
other times it rises to the very water's edge, and even 
thrusts out its base in an inverted position upon the 
surface of the water, as if it would float bv the mere 
contact of the dry base with the air, just as the 
Linnem and many other MoUusca do. It does not, 
however, so far as I can judge, appear capable of 
quite accomplishing this; but it can remain so 
suspended, if the slightest possible portion of the 
margin remain in adhesive contact with the side of 
the glass.* A little shaking of the vessel, however, 
causes the water to overflow the surface of the base, 
which had been hitherto dry, when the animal iu- 
stantly falls prone to the bottom. 

April 2Srd. — I found a curious and beautiful 
variety of Anthea cereus in a pool at Tor Abbey 
Headland. Its body and oral disk are very light 

* I have since seen one, however, floating quite freely on the surface 
of the vessel, base uppcnnost. 


pellucid olive, but the tentacles are spotless snowy 
white, as if carved out of ivory, or rather as if mo- 
delled in the purest white wax. Its appearance, as it 
hangs on the side of a glass vessel, with the long and 
slender tentacles arching and drooping downward in 
the most graceful curves, is exquisitely attractive. 

These objects are, it is true, among the humblest 
of creatures that are endowed with organic life. They 
stand at the very confines, so to speak, of the vital 
world, at the lowest step of the animate ladder that 
reaches up to Man; aye, and beyond him. Creatures 
linked in the closest alliance with these were long 
reckoned among the sea-weeds and mosses, even by 
the most eminent philosophers ; and to this day the 
collectors who make sea-weeds into pretty baskets, 
arrange the hydroid polypidoms among them without 
a misgiving of their identity. Nay, the madrepores 
and corals, nearer kindred still to the Actinia, were 
supposed even by the immortal Kay, to be inanimate 
stones, with " a kind of vegetation and resemblance 
to plants." 

The lamp of vitality, then, is just going out in these 
forms ; or, if you please, here we catch the first kind- 
ling of that spark, which glows into so noble a flame 
in the Aristotles, the Newtons, and the Miltons of our 
heaven-gazing race. What then ? shall Ave despise 
these glimmering rays ? Shall we say they are mean 
creatures, beneath our regard ? Surely no : God does 
not despise them. The forecasting of their being 


occupied his eternal Mind "before the mountains were 
brought forth ;" the contrivances of their organization 
are the fruit of his infinite Wisdom, and elicit adoring 
wonder and praise from the hierarchies of angels ; 
and the exquisite tints with which they are adorned are 
thepencillings of his almighty Hand. Yes, O Lord! 
the lowly tribes that tenant these dark pools are, like 
the heavens themselves, " the work of thy fingers," 
and do as truly as those glowing orbs above us 
" declare thy glory," and " show thy handy work." 
If then they were worthy to be created and sustained 
by Thee, they are not unworthy to be examined by us 
with reverential regard. 


Petit Tor — Squirrel — Limestone Ledge — Stone-borers — Anemones 
and Sea-weeds — Clear Rock-pools — Daisy Anemone — Diffi- 
culty of procuring Specimens — Mode of Operation — A. 
Metamorphosis — Description of the Species — Tentacles —  
Colours — Varieties — Habits — Structure of the Tentacles — 
Thread -shooting Capsules — Petit Tor Pools — Thick-horned 
Anemone — Description of the Species — Suggestions of Iden- 
tity with A. coriacea — Its Habits — Beautiful Varieties — 
Changes of Figure — Deep Tide-pool — Prawn — Its beauty of 
Colour — Changes produced by Exposure to Light. 

The beach of white shingle at Oddicombe, whither 
ladies so often repair to search for pebbles containing 
fossil madrepores, washed up by the tide, is bounded 
on the north by the promontory known as Petit Tor. 
This is a bold bluff headland, almost entirely compo- 
sed of compact limestone, which, on the side that 
fronts the sea, has been extensively cut away by the 
quarrymen, for building and ornamental purposes. 
Its rounded summit is clothed with a turf of that 
beautifully smooth and close texture, peculiar to 
downs, which many a nobleman's lawn might envy; 
sheep love to graze on it, and may be seen perched 
about the giddy heights, and upon the narrow winding 
footpaths that their own steps have worn, nipping the 
short fine grass in perfect security, where a false step 
must send them down upon the stony beach below. 
The always verdant and almost always blossoming 


furze covers large spaces with its profuse clumps, 
interspersed with heds of the stinking Iris, a plant 
which has little to recommend it, hut w^hich is very 
common on these seaward slopes. Down the perpen- 
dicular steeps hangs and creeps the ivy, concealing 
the rugged rock with its evergreen heauty ; and on 
the slopes that are less precipitous, matted thickets 
of the hrake-fern and hramhle inclose and protect 
little sheltered spots, w^here, all through the spring, 
primroses grow hy handfuls, and stud the hill-side 
with thick spots of their delicate yellow, as thick as 
stars and constellations in the sky of a winter's night. 
In these thickets I was rather surprised and pleased 
to find the Squirrel residing ; one morning in March 
as I was quietly sitting on a stone, looking down from 
the brow of the promontory on the sea that Avas 
heating in over the rocks below, out pops Squggy, 
and with a grunt and a flourish of his feathery tail 
over his back in he dashes again, then out to peep, 
and away to go again ; I all the while holding my 
breath, in hopes to confirm his confidence. But no ; 
he would not adventure again. 

The limestone at the base of the promontory, on 
that side I mean which faces the south, and bounds 
Oddicombe beach, is very precipitous ; but it has 
been fretted by the incessant breaking of the waves 
into caverns and groins, buttresses, basins, shelves 
and ridges of all sorts of fantastic shapes. In some 
places there are spout-holes, the sea running up into 
a funnel-shaped cave, wdth a peculiarly hollow sound 
when you hear it beneath your feet, and breakiug out 
at an opening some way within, with a gust of wind 


and spray, and a loud roar. The surface of the rock 
Itself, from some distance above high-water mark 
downward, is corroded into a thousand little cavities, 
all honey-combed, as it were, in the most irregular 
manner, a circumstance which greatly facilitates the 
action of the sea in wearing down the masses. These 
cavities have been produced by a stoneboring shelled 
Mollusk, Saxicava riujosa, which, as I believe, attacks 
only limestone, but this, hard as it is, it burrows 
through and through. It caji live only where it is 
covered during a part of every tide ; and therefore as 
part of this honey-combed structure is now above the 
reach of the tide, it must be inferi'ed that this lime- 
stone has been elevated, since the existence of these 
stoneborers. It would be worth w^hile to inquire 
how far the honey-combed limestones of other regions, 
of the South side of Jamaica for example, may have 
had a similar origin, though this is explained by 
Sir H. de la Beche in a very different manner. 

One can scramble out upon the side of these rocks 
at low water, and find between tide-marks a sort of 
ledge sufficiently level to permit examination; though 
the rough surface, and especially the sharp points 
that project between the honey-combed cavities, ren- 
der the footing precarious and uncomfortable. The 
surface is leprous with myriads of acorn-shells, each 
tenanted by its living inhabitant, and every one put- 
ting forth, as soon as covered by the tide, its delicate 
little grasping hand of feathery fingers, or, if you 
please, its casting net, with which it is perpetually 
making its little throws for passing prey. Limpets, 
periwinkles, and murices also stud the rock, and in 


the lower parts, where the limits of the tide's recess 
are approached, are Actinice of a deep red hue, the 
common, unattractive species, the only one known 
however to thousands of sea-side visitors who talk 
enthusiastically of sea-anemones, — A. mesemhryan- 
themiim. The whole of the space between the tide 
lines is covered more or less thickly w^ith matted 
masses of olive sea-weeds, short and stunted on the 
higher sites, and becoming more and more luxuriant 
as they approach low-w«ater mark, where they wave 
in tangled tresses at every incoming sea, or hang in 
streaming shaggy locks as it recedes. The irregu- 
larities of the surface necessarily produce many 
hollows of various sizes, which, being covered at high 
water, remain full as the tide recedes, and, except in 
vei*}^ rough weather, when the sea is much loaded with 
earthy particles, hold their contents in the most beau- 
tifully transparent condition : and the contracted 
dimensions allowing no room for the action of the 
wind, no ruffling of the surface is there to mar the 
glass- like clearness of the water, or to prevent the eye 
from peering down into every corner and crevice. 
The constant presence of water in these basins allows 
many delicate species of sea-weeds to grow freely in 
them, at a height above low- water mark, where other- 
wise they would never be found : and hence sheltered 
tide-pools constantly present specimens of the smaller 
and more lovely Alyce in great perfection. In some 
of these grow along the sides, just beneath the surface, 
single fronds of the pretty little PJiodymenia imlmetta, 
and waving tufts of the finer sorts of Ceramium, with 
the moss-like Vlocamium coccineit7?i, and whole 


masses of Chylocladia articidata, that look like the 
thickets of prickly pear which we see in the tropics, 
only viewed through a diminishing glass, and turned 
purplish-red. Laurencia pinnatifida clothes the 
lower rocks ahundantly, where the sea washes up ; 
and along the margins of some of the ledges, and 
around the rims of some of the lowest pools, 
that curious plant Rhodijmeuia ciliata throws out 
dense pendent tufts of its deep red fronds, all hristled 
over with little leaflets in the most singular fashion. 


All along this line of limestone rock, in almost 
every tide-pool and hollow that retains the sea- water, 
from the size of one's hand upwards, we may at 
any time find colonies of the lovely Daisy Anemone, 
Actinia hellis. In the sunshine of a fair day they 
expand beautifully, and you may see them studding 
the face of the rock just beneath the surface, from the 
size of a shilling to that of a crown piece. Nothing 
seems easier than to secure them, but no sooner do 
the fingers touch one, than its beautifully circular 
disk begins to curl and pucker its margin, and to 
incurve it in the form of a cup ; if further annoyed, 
the rim of this cup contracts more and more, until it 
closes, and the animal becomes globose and much 
diminished, recedmg all the time from the assault, 
and retiring into the rock. Presently you dis- 
cover that you can no longer touch it at all : it is 
shrunk to the bottom of its hole ; the sharp irregular 
edges of which project and furnish a stony defence 



to the inhabitant. Nothing will do but the chisel, 
and this is by no means easy of appliance. It is rare 
that the position of the hole is such as to allow of 
both arms working with any ease ; the rock is under 
water, and often, if your chisel is short, it is wholly 
immersed during the work, when every blow which 
the hammer strikes upon its head has to fall upon 
a stratum of water, which splashes forcibly into your 
eyes and over your clothes ; the rock is very hard, and 
the chisel makes little impression ; and what is fre- 
quently the greatest disappointment of all, the powdery 
debris produced by the bruising of the stone mingles 
with the water and presently makes it perfectly opaque, 
as if a quantity of powdered chalk had been mixed with 
it, so that you cannot see how to direct the blows, you 
cannot discern whether you have uncovered the 
Actinia or not, and frequently are obliged to give up 
the attempt when nearly accomplished, simply because 
you can neither see hole nor Actinia, and as to feeling 
in the pap-like mud that your implement has been 
making, it is out of the question. Supposing how- 
ever, that you have got on pretty well, that by making 
a current in the pool with your hand you have washed 
away the clouded water sufficiently to see the where- 
abouts, and that you perceive that another well-direc- 
ted blow or two will split off the side of the cavity, 
— you have now to take care so to proportion the 
force that at last you may neither crush the animal 
with the chisel on the one hand, nor on the other 
drive it off so suddenly that it shall fall with the 
fragment to the bottom of the pool out of reach. 
However, we will suppose you have happily 


detached and secured your Actinia without injury. 
But how unlike its former self, when you were desirous 
of making its closer acquaintance, is it now ! A little 
hard glohose knob of flesh, not so big as a schoolboy's 
marble, is the creature that just now expanded to the 
sun's rays a lovely disk of variegated hues, wdth a 
diameter greater than that of a Spanish dollar. It is 
moreover covered w^ith tenacious w^hite slime, which 
exudes from it faster than you can clear it away ; and 
altogether its appearance is any thing but inviting. 
You throw it into a jar of water, which of course you 
have with you when collecting living zoophytes ; and 
thus bring it home, w^hen you transfer it to a tumbler 
or other suitable vessel of clear sea-water freshly 
drawn. And here let us watch its changes; — which, 
however, w^ill not be effected immediately ; for it wdll 
not expand itself in all its original beauty until it has 
taken a fresh attachment for its base, which will not 
in all probability be for a day or two at least. 

The body or stem of Actinia hellis is more or less 
cylindrical generally; though subject to some change 
in this respect, for it is occasionally a little enlarged, 
as it approaches the disk; the sucking base is slightly 
larger than the diameter of the body, which in speci- 
mens of an inch-and-a-half expanse, may be about half 
an inch. The length of the body varies much, accord- 
ing to the depth of the cavity in which the animal 
lives, for it must expand its disk at the surface. In 
the open w^ater in a vase, when it appears at home, it 
may commonly be about an inch from the base to the 
expansion of the disk, but I have a beautiful specimen 
before my eye at this moment, which has stretched 


itself to a height of three inches, expanding at the 
extremity as usual : the thickness of the stem is in 
this case somewhat diminished. 

From the upper part of the cylindrical stem or hody, 
the disk ahruptly spreads around to the width ahove 
indicated. In this respect the A. hellis differs so 
greatly from other littoral species of sea-anemones, 
that it can never he mistaken hy those who have once 
seen it. In these the disk is merelv the termination 
of a short thick column, occasionally a little expanded 
over the edge ; in hellis, however, the diameter of the 
disk is generally four times that of the hody, at the 
point from which it expands. Its form, viewed 
externally, is that of a shallow cup, hut its surface is 
in general almost flat, or a very little depressed to 
the centre. The whole hears a likeness closer than 
usual to a flower, with a footstalk. The disk is so 
thin and membranous, that it is continually changing 
its form ; the margin is frequently bent over out- 
wardly or inwardly in places ; as it lies on the uneven 
rock, it accommodates itself to the roughnesses, and 
is hence often irregularly undulated; it very com- 
monly bends inward the edge in several places, so as 
to make puckers or frilled scollopings around the 
margin. And this surely must be meant by what 
writers describe and draw as "lobes" to the disk: for 
of lohes proper it has none ; not the slightest trace ; 
the outline of the disk is most perfectly and beauti- 
fully circular ; and I find it often expanded in this 
state, without any puckering or festooning. (See 
Plate I, fig. 1.) 

The tentacles are small but numerous : they are 

F. K t'o^se. dd 

P''itfUd by }{ uUmaitdil ^ "^'aiX^J n.'-* 


5^6. A-CT. ROSEA. 9 10 A.CT. ANCUICOl^^. 



arranged in about six rows ; the innermost series con- 
tains about twelve tentacles ; the next about the same 
number ; the third about twice as many ; the fourth 
is again doubled ; the fifth increases in the same pro- 
portion, and the sixth contains about thrice as many 
as the fifth. This ratio, if accurately carried out, 
would give a total of seven hundred and sixty eight 
tentacles to one Actinia, a number which is not far 
from the mark, though as in other species, the rows 
are not quite regular. The inmost series of tentacles 
is usually erect, or even inclines inwards, the others 
decline more and more towards the circumference, 
until the outmost two or three rows lie quite flat upon 
the disk, to which the exterior one of all forms an 
exquisite fringe ; all the rows are small, but they 
diminish outwardly in size, and more rapidly the 
nearer they approach the edge ; those of the outmost 
row are very minute, the longest (for they are not 
equal) not exceeding the sixteenth of an inch in length, 
and some being only tiny tubercles : they are slender, 
and set so close together, that I counted sixty in 
an inch. 

The mouth is oblong, sometimes contracted to a 
slit, at others showing a sub-oval, or lozenge-shaped 
opening, with the lips within finely crenated. Deli- 
cate depressed lines diverge from the mouth to the 
circumference of the disk, by tracing which we shall 
find that the convex space included between two lines 
leads to and terminates in a tentacle ; the disk may 
in fact be described as formed of the roots of the ten- 
tacles soldered together. Viewed from outside, with 
a strong light behind, the substance of the disk is 


exquisitely beautiful ; tlie diverging but almost pa- 
rallel fibres, resembling tlie grain of a beautiful piece 
of wainscot, and each ending abruptly with a rounded 
point, wliere the tentacle springs up from the surface 
on the opposite side. 

The colours of this very lovely Actinia I have not 
found to vary much. The base is white, which as it 
ascends becomes flesh-coloured, then lilac, passing (at 
about the point where the disk expands) into a dull 
greyish purple, more or less tinged with brown. The 
upper part of the stem, and the whole of the outer 
surface of the disk, are studded with pale spots, which 
are the extremities of tubular glands, one use of 
which is to attach by a kind of suction, minute bits 
of shell, gravel, &c., to the surface, for concealment 
as is supposed. I have not seen this habit commonly 
resorted to by this species, but I have witnessed it. 
(See fig. 2.) 

The upper surface of the disk is of a rich deep 
umber-brown, often mottled with grey at the first row 
of tentacles, and merging into grey, lavender-colour 
or white, towards the third or fourth row. The tenta- 
cles are tapered to a point ; they are grooved longitu- 
dinally on the upper side ; they are commonly dark 
brown at the base, and yellowish-brown through the 
rest of their length, blotched and speckled with white. 
Those of the inmost row, and frequently some of the 
others, have one or two broad rings of pure conspi- 
cuous white near the basal part, and a broad spot of 
white divided by a brown line lengthwise, on the disk 
just at their foot. There is some diversity in the 
proportions of brown and grey, in different individuals, 


but the yellowish brown tentacle studded with whitish 
specks is, I think, characteristic. 

There is, however, a very marked variety; for 
though I at first was disposed to consider it distinct, 
it must, I feel sure, be referred to this species. In a 
specimen before me from Capstone Hill, Ilfracombe, 
the disk and tentacles are unrelieved by any trace of 
white or grey, being of an uniform dark brown, ex- 
cept that the tentacular ridges that cross the disk are 
bounded on each side by a fine line of scarlet, 
scarcely visible except with a lens : its effect is however 
to give a tint of chocolate to the surface. The out- 
side of this specimen diifers not materially from the 
common state ; it is, however, of a particularly bright 
crimson, instead of purplish. (See fig. 3.) 

That this is a variety of A. hellis is manifest, be- 
cause I have another on the table from the same 
locality, which beautifully connects the two states. 
This is a very handsome specimen ; the disk is deep 
brown, almost black, with the fine lines of scarlet 
diverging from the centre as in that just described. 
The tentacles are some of them brown with one or 
two specks only of white near the base, and others, 
mottled in the ordinary manner with dark brown, 
light brown, grey and white ; what is strange is that 
these varieties of colour are disposed in groups, a 
cluster of tentacles of the former hues, and then a 
batch of the latter. The scarlet runs up around the 
base of each tentacle, flushing its low^er parts in a 
very elegant style ; and the oral aperture is marked 
around the very edge with conspicuous white tooth- 
like lines. This specimen was remarkable for »the 


extent to which it was clothed with coarse gravel, and 
for the tenacity with which it held fast its strange 
stony garment, not dropping a fragment even after 
several days' captivity. In general Actinice drop 
their gravel coats soon after they are put into a vessel 
of clear Avater. 

It is for the most part a stationary species, and that 
not only in its own selected hole in the rock-pool, hut 
even in cajDtivity. It seldom leaves the spot in the 
glass vessel to which it has once attached itself. I 
have had a specimen, however, take it into his head 
to be a traveller, after several weeks' residence in one 
spot : he walked off in a straight line to a distance of 
four inches, performing the feat, at a pretty uniform 
rate, in about eight hours, or half-an-inch per hour. 

In order to examine the structure of the tentacles 
I cut off with a fine pair of scissors the tips of one or 
two, and submitted them to the microscope upon the 
compressorium. As soon as the pressure began to 
flatten them, it became apparent that the tentacle was 
composed of rather thick gelatinous walls surrounding 
a tubular centre. The latter was filled with a vast mul- 
titude of very minute granules of a rich sienna-brown 
hue, and almost quite globular in form ; all being 
quite alike in shape, colour, and dimensions. These 
escaped by thousands, on the increase of the pressure, 
from the tip of the tentacle, where there was evidently 
a natural orifice forced open by the pressure, but or- 
dinarily, as I suppose, kept firmly closed by muscular 
action. The gelatinous walls of the tentacle con- 
tained, imbedded in their substance, a goodly number, 
(not so immense as in some other species) of those 


highly curious organs known as the filiferous capsules. 
They are in this case very minute, heing about one 
twelve hundredth part of an inch in length, almost 
linear, and slightly curved. The pressure being con- 
tinued, each of these little organs suddenly shoots 
forth from one end to a great length, a slender^ 
highly elastic thread, which had hitherto been coiled 
up spirally within its cavity. The expulsion of this 
thread is effected by a proper organism, excited by 
the pressure on the tissues of the tentacle, but not 
forced out by the compression of the capsule itself, for 
this is much too minute to be compressed by the glass 
plates, under any power that can be brought to bear 
upon them. It is supposed that the adhesive touch 
of the tentacles resides in these little organs, and that 
a poisonous fluid accompanies the emission of the 
thread ; since the mere contact of a tentacle with any 
small animal appears at once to paralyse it, however 
lively it may have been but a moment before. If this 
be so, what a highly curious example is here of the 
wondrously effective provision which the infinite re- 
sources of the Divine Wisdom have made for the 
wants of every creature ! We shall have further occa- 
sion to speak of these curious organs, and to exhibit 
them under forms even much more complicated and 
wonderful than they appear here. 


The north side of the limestone promontory of Petit 
Tor, — that side that bounds the little cove where 
Woodley cuts the great blocks of variegated marble 


■which he makes into his well-known tables and chim- 
ney-pieces, — is not less rugged and worn into caverns 
and holes than that side which I have just been 
describing. It is, however, very different in its 
character and its productions. The erosions have a 
greater tendency to form deep basins in which the 
water always lies; and the lofty rock overhangs much 
more. Add to this that, the aspect being north, the 
sun's rays never penetrate to the cavities. For all 
these reasons they are particularly dark, and therefore 
favourable for the development of the deeper-growing 
Algm, and many of the zoophytes which are impatient 
of much light. 

To get at them you walk along a tolerably level 
platform of rock beneath the cliff, for some distance, 
towards the point of the promontory, till you are 
arrested by a cleft, a little too wide to be leaped, that 
runs right up to the perpendicular face of the cliff. 
By means of one or two slight projections you can 
scramble across here, and then from the opposite side 
descend into the chasm, where you will find one or 
two beautiful little deep basins, almost as regular and 
smooth, especially near the bottom, as if they had 
been chiselled out of the marble by a sculptor. 


In the few holes and angles that are found around 
the sides of these rock-pools dwell some fine speci- 
mens of the noblest species of Sea- anemone that I 
am acquainted with. Actinia crassicornis. They are 
rather difficult to procure, because of the firmness 


with which they adhere to the rock, and the protection 
which their base receives from the edges of the hol- 
lows in which they live. One large fellow that I 
attempted, just below the surface of the pool, con- 
tracted so forcibly on being touched, that little 
streams of water as thick as a pin shot out perpen- 
dicularly from many of the tentacles to the distance 
of a foot. The species became a favourite with me, 
for its magnificent beauty ; and I kept in captivity 
many specimens. 

A fine variety not uncommon has the body of a dull 
dark red, with numerous, rather large, grey warts ; 
tbe tentacles dark purplish red, with pale, almost 
white, tips. When fully expanded, and quite at home, 
it imbibes water to such an extent as to become sub- 
diaphanous. Under these circumstances it is exqui- 
sitely beautiful. A specimen now before me is about 
two inches in the diameter of the body, which is not 
inflated to nearly its full capacity. The ground- 
colour of the body is pale olive, tinged rather ir- 
regularly with red, becoming darker towards the 
oral margin. The warts are pale lilac, evidently 
an'anged in perpendicular rows of about fifteen in each 
row ; the tentacles are large, tumid, and elegantly 
diaphanous ; their general colour is pale purple or 
lake-red, the ^tint disappearing towards the tip, which 
is whitish brown ; a rather broad ring of white goes 
round near the middle of each tentacle, which ring is, 
however, broken on the outer side, Besides this, 
each tentacle is marked on one side with a large patch 
of opaque white extending from the base through 
about half its length. This patch frequently sends 


off a half-ring of white, on the interior side, near its 
middle. The patch itself is irregular in form and 
extent, generally losing itself gradually at its up- 
per extremity ; it is not always on the same side ; 
frequently two contiguous tentacles have the patch 
on their two opposing faces. The oral disk is dark 
vinous red. crossed by some streaks of white, each of 
which is double, separating to enclose the base of an 
inner tentacle, and re-uniting. These stripes have a 
very pleasing effect. 

I doubt much the specific distinction of A. crassi- 
cornis and A. coriacea. Dr. Johnston describes the 
former as best distinguished by the readiness with 
which the- rim of the disk is twisted, by the facility 
with which it becomes tumid, and by the vesicular 
furrowed lobes, which are frequently protruded from 
the mouth. All these characters my specimens have 
with distinctness ; the last named I shall presently 
allude to. For one of the others the following 
instance may suffice. I brought home a fine speci- 
men of the crimson variety, which I put into a pan of 
water just sufficient to cover it. In an hour or two it 
protruded the lips and inflated them so immensely 
that at first sight I thought the animal had turned 
bottom upwards, and that I was looking at the broad 
base. The surface was nearly smooth, flat and cir- 
cular, about two and a half inches in diameter, occu- 
pying the whole breadth, so that the tentacles were 
partly overlaid by it, and appeared only as a thick 
fringe peeping out from under its edge in a horizontal 
plane. There was a curious, sharp-edged, narrow 
srroove across the centre of the surface, rather deep, 


extending from one margin to the opposite, and meet- 
ing in the central orifice, looking as if it had heen cut 
with a knife. The animal remained in this state all 
through the evening and night, and in the morning 
slowly retracted its pouting lips, and resumed its 
ordinary- appearance. 

On the other hand- the same excellent authority 
affirms that A. crassicornis never endues itself with an 
extraneous covering, a hahit which he notices as dis- 
tinctive of A. coriacea. Now I generally find my 
specimens, which are abundant on this coast, covered 
with a coating of gravel, adhering to the warts, which 
however is soon thrown off in captivity. Mr. Couch's 
description too of A. cor. agrees closely with mine. 
I particularly notice, in the variety I am about to 
describe, the thickened rim of the body outside the 
tentacles, which comes to a distinct edge all round, 
crenated Avith close-set, yet isolated, small Avhite 
glandular knobs. 

I have no doubt that the species is the A. coriacea 
of Eapp, and the A. gemmacea of Dalyell; but 
throughout this volume I have taken as my standard 
of nomenclature the Brit. Zooph. of Dr. Johnston, 
the second Edition. 

A more common and still more beautiful variety 
has the body of a clear green, more or less inclined to 
olive, and profusely marked with crimson, arranged 
in longitudinal stripes of irregular form and size, 
varying from fine undulating lines to very broad 
bands; the whole presenting an appearance, especially 
when the tentacles are withdrawn, like that of some 
apples that are streaked with red. The warts are, as 



in the former case, clear bluish grey. The tentacles 
agree with those of the former variety, except that the 
redness has none of the purple element in it; it is more- 
over very faint, and is confined to an annular band, ex- 
tending from the white ring about half-way to the tip. 

The peristomatous disk is of the same rich red as 
the body; but the part from which the tentacles 
spring is pale pellucid glaucous, streaked with red. 
The streaks are convergent towards the centre, and 
for the most part embrace a tentacle, uniting both, 
behind and before its base ; which produces a beau- 
tiful effect. 

The changes of figure in this species when kept in 
captivity, are remarkably great and rapid. They are 
evidently effected by the admission of water into any 
part or the whole at will, and its ejection, or transmission 
from one part to another. Sometimes it appears vase- 
like with a small foot, above which there is a strong 
constriction, the whole of the body above being 
greatly tumid and diaphanous; then the animal will 
transmit the contained fluid into the foot, and the 
constriction is made to pass in quick succession all 
up the body, until it disappears at the margin of the 
oral disk, imparting the most curious gradations of 
form. At others it is greatly lengthened perpendicu- 
larly, being thick withal, cylindrical with an expanded 
top, or else with the top rounded, and perhaps the 
tentacles crowded, and just peeping forth. 

Such then is one of the finest native .examples of 

The zoophyte, 
That link which binds Prometheus to his rock, 
The living fibre to insensate matter. 




Beyond the chasm just described, we scramble 
into another, and come to a far larger and lower 
tide-pool, so low as to be separated from the sea 
only at spring-tides. It is about twenty-five feet 
long, and eight or ten wide, and is quite over- 
shadowed by the dark rock, in a sort of cavern of 
which it lies. The great oar-weeds and tangles 
C Laminaria saccharina and digitata) have here room 
to attain their full size ; and their rich brown fronds 
wave to and fro, or lie motionless in the clear water 
often supporting whole forests of tiny zoophytes, 
such as Laomedea fjeniculata. All round the edges 
of the pool, from the water-line downwards, grow in 
luxuriance the large oval dark red fronds of the 
dulse {Iridcea ediilis) and the more brilliant and 
more elegant Delesseria sanfjiiinea, of which an 
American Poet has said, — 

"The crimson-leaf of the dulse is seen 
To blush like a banner bathed in slaughter ;" 

and other minor sea-weeds, mostly of the red class, 
are found in fine condition, some in and some out of 
the water. 

Large Prawns swim at freedom through this large 
pool ; and a very pleasing sight it is to watch them 
as they glide gracefully and equally along. The tail- 
fans are widely dilated, rendering conspicuous the 
•contrasted colours with which they are painted ; the 
jaws are expanded, the feet hanging loosely beneath. 
iS^ow one rises to the surface almost perpendicularly ; 


then glides down towards the bottom, sweeping up 
again in a graceful curve. Now he examines the 
weeds, then shoots under the dark angles of the rock. 
As he comes up towards me, I stretch out my hand 
over the water ; in an instant he shoots backwards a 
foot or so ; then catching hold of a weed with his 
feet, and straddling its vertical edge, he remains 
motionless, gazing up at me with his large prominent 
eyes, as if in the utmost astonishment. 

This Prawn, that comes to our tables decked out and 
penetrated, as it were, with a delicate, pellucid, rose- 
colour, beautiful as he is then, is far more beautiful 
when just netted from the bottom, or from the overhang- 
ing weed-grown side, of some dark pool. If you happen 
never to have seen him in this state, let me introduce 
him to you. Form and dimensions of course you are 
acquainted with ; these do not change, but I will just 
observe that it is a " sizeable" fellow that is now 
before me, whose portrait I am going to take. Stand 
still, you beauty ! and don't shoot round and round 
the jar in that retrograde fashion, when I want to jot 
down your elegant lineaments ! There, now he is quiet! 
quiet but watchful ! maintaining a sort of armed neu- 
trality, with extended eyes, antennse stretching per- 
pendicularly upwards, claws held out divergently with 
open pincers ready to seize, as if those slender things 
could do me any harm, and feet and expanded tail 
prepared in a twinkling to dart backward on the least 

Look then at his cephalo-thorax, or what you 
would perhaps call the head, the cylindrical shield 
that you would pick ofi' as the first essay towards eating 


him. Its ground colour is a greenish grey, hut so 
translucent that we can hardly assign any hue-proper 
to it. This is marked with several stripes of rich 
deep hrown, running longitudinally, each stripe being 
edged with huff. Then the body, or more correctly 
the abdomen, is marked with about a dozen stripes of 
similar colour, but set transversely, girding the seg- 
ments round with a series of dark lines ; and the last 
segment before the setting on of the tail-fins has 
three lines running lengthwise again. 

Now we come to the tail. But here the pen fails ; 
only the pencil could convey an adequate idea of this 
exquisitely painted organ. The four oval plates, that 
play over each other, and that form a broad and 
powerful fin when expanded, are bordered wdth a pale 
red band : the outer pair have in the centre a red 
spot, the inner pair a streak of the same hue ; each 
plate has near its extremity a spot of cream-white 
(much larger on the outer pair) made more conspicu- 
ous by being broadly margined by reddish brown. 
Finally the plates are studded all over with red specks, 
which when magnified are seen to be stars. Besides 
these colours, there are scattered over the body in 
symmetrical order, several spots of opaque cream 
white, and some of pale chesnut or fawn- brown. And 
to close this enumeration of colours, the claws and 
feet are light blue, encircled at regular distances by 
bands, of which half is deep purple and the other 
half pale orange, I have not spoken of the fringes of 
the jaw-plates, nor of those that terminate the tail-fin, 
but the structure of these is exquisitely fine, especially 
when examined with a lens. 


To add to these beauties there is seen in certain 
lights a rich flush of iridescent purple reflected from 
the whole surface of the animal. 

A few hours' captivity changes all this, and the 
Prawn, though it does not appear to have suffered in 
health or vigour, has put on a most quakerly sobriety 
of colour, all the fine bands and stripes and spots 
having become so pale as to he scarcely distinguish- 
able from the general pellucid olive hue of the body. 

I cannot tell how this loss of colour is effected > 
but I have reason to think that light, the great agent 
in producing colour in most cases, is the cause. I 
took two specimens just dipped from a deep poo], and 
equal in the richness of their contrasted colours; one 
of these I placed in a large glass vase of sea-water 
that stood on my study-table ; the other in a similar 
vase shut up in a dark closet. In twenty-four hours 
the one that had been exposed to the light had taken 
on the pale appearance just alluded to ; the one that 
had been in darkness had scarcely lost any of the 
richness of its bands and stripes, though the general 
olive hue of the body had become darker, and of a 
browner tint. This individual, however, assumed the 
appearance of the former, before it had been an hour 
emancipated from its dark closet. Without attempt- 
ing to account for the phenomenon, I would just 
advert to the parallel exhibited by the sea-weeds. 
The brilliant colours displayed by many of these 
exist, as is well known, in the greatest perfection, 
when the plants grow at considerable depths, or in 
the caves and holes of the rocks, where light can but 
very dimly penetrate. Some of these will not grow 


at all in shallow water or in a full light ; and those 
that canbear such circumstances are commonly affected 
by them in a very marked degree, — marked by the 
degeneracy of their forms, and by the loss of their 
brilliancy of colour. The Prawn, as I have already 
hinted, delights in the obscurity of deep holes and 
rocky pools ; it is here alone that his fine zebra-like 
colours are developed. When taken in shallow pools, 
he is of the plain pale-olive tint of the specimen that 
had spent four- and- twenty hours on my table. 


A Visit to Brixham — The Road — Character of the Coast — Berry 
Castle — Legends — Brixham — Coast Scenery — Animals of the 
Shore — The Painted Scallop — Its Beauty — Mantle — Tentacles 
— Gem-like Eyes — Climbing Powers — Leaps — Mode of per- 
forming these misunderstood — Explanation — Functions and 
Structure of the Eyes — Structure of the Gills — Ciliary Action 
— Beauty of the Phenomenon — Oddicombe Rock-pool — Its 
Eorm — Contents — The Feather- star — Its Habits in Captivity — 
Reproduction of its Limbs — Watcombe — Romantic Scenery 
Sandstone Cliffs — The Sea Lemon— The Purple Dye — Mode 
of applying it — Changes of Colour— Tor Abbey Sands — Shore 
Animals— The Pholas — Its Siphons — -Their Use, Structure 
and Currents — Curious Contrivance — Anstey's Cove — View 
from Babbicombe Downs — Skylark's Song — Precipice of 
Limestone — Abundance of Animals — Pleurobranchus. 

On a fine morning near the middle of March I 
walked to Torquay Station, and took my seat on the 
box of the omnibus for Brixham. I wanted to see 
what advantages the place might present for a tempo- 
rary settlement, what rents were, what sort of a coast it 
was zoologically, and so forth. The road was plea- 
sant, or rather would have been, if it had not been so 
bitterly cold; but the wind had been for many weeks, 
was then, and was destined to continue, most pertina- 
ciously at East, and it blew right upon the shore, along 
which the way lay for a great part of the distance. 

Long beaches of sand and shingle, the Tor Abbey, 
the Livermead, and the Paignton Sands, divided by 


low but perpendicular cliflfs of red conglomerate, often 
underworn and sometimes insular, jutting out in bold 
headlands, — are characteristic of the shore hereabout, 
till we arrive at Paignton ; a variety of coast which 
cannot but be productive to the littoral naturalist, 
especially as the receding tide lays bare an ample area 
of low sandstone, hollowed into thousands of tide- 

My fellow passenger was a legal gentleman from 
town, revisiting Brixham after an absence of twenty 
years, intelligent and facetious ; Coacheywas commu- 
nicative and confidential ; and by and by, as the sun 
came out, and we turned off into the sheltered road 
from Paignton onward, under the lee of high hedges, 
we began to find it not so dreary after all. 

The songs of birds came from the groves, mellow 
and cheery, though spring had not yet thought of 
beginning to deck with leaves their naked bowers. 
How delightful is the voice of a singing bird ! how it 
soothes the mind, and fills it with pleasant emotions I 

' Tis sweet in solitude to hear 
The earliest music of the year. 

The Blackbird's loud wild note ; 
Or, from the wintry thicket drear. 

The Thrush's stamm'ring throat. 

In rustic solitude 'tis sweet 

The earliest flowers of spring to greet, — 

The violet from its tomb, 
The strawberry, creeping at our feet. 

The sorrel's simple bloom. 


The ruined castle of Berry, standing about three 


miles on the right hand .of the road gave occasion to 
discuss the legendary history of the Pomeroy family 
to whom it belonged. In particular, the story of that 
redoubtable Baron who slew the King's herald sent to 
arrest him for high treason ; who then gained pos- 
session of the Monastery on St. Michael's Mount by 
assuming the disguise of a monk, and who caused 
himself to be bled to death when unable longer to 
maintain it against the royal forces. And the romance 
of his two sons, who rather than yield their castle to 
be dismantled, leaped on horse-back from the preci- 
pice on which it was built. 

The little town of Brixham, pretty as it appears 
when viewed from Torquay, is but a sordid affair 
when you see it at hand. The lower town particularly 
is close, mean, and dirty ; indeed, truth to tell, I saw 
refinements in filth here, which I had never the fortune 
to see parallelled in all my wanderings. The place 
looked, with some exceptions, pretty much as one 
may suppose it to have looked in the days of the 
Plantagenets or the Stuarts, stationary, when all 
around is advancing. " Fast place this !" said my 
fellow traveller of the morning, with an arch leer, as 
he saw me resume my place on the box to return, 
after the day's exploration. 

The scenery on either hand, when once clear of 
the harbour, is bold and magnificent. The coast is 
rocky and precipitous, (the town itself appears 
strangely stuck upon precipices, reaching from top to 
bottom) and is indented with little coves, the most 
picturesque imaginable. Berry Head, a noble pro- 
montory of compact limestone, rears its lofty head 


abruptly out of the sea not far from the town, and 
forms a commanding boundary of the prospect, con- 
spicuous all around. 

I did not obtain much in the way of natural 
history on the shore, except what I was already 
familiar with at Petit Tor. Under the large stones 
at low water Trochus  ziziphinus was numerous, a 
handsome shell, very regularly conical, and marked 
with triangular spots of purple on a grey ground. 
The animal also is handsomely coloured, the foot 
being pale orange, somewhat like the flesh of a melon, 
spotted and fi'eckled above with dark brown. Hun- 
dreds of tiny crimson warts were projecting from the 
face of the slimy overarching rock, each of which 
when touched disappeared, and left to mark the spot 
only the orifice of a minute hole. This was the 
siphon of Saccicava riigosa, a little bivalve shell, the 
animal of which is endowed with the power of boring 
holes in the hardest limestone. And under the flat 
stones I obtained two or three small specimens of that 
beautiful scallop, Pecten opercitlaris, which is taken 
in great abundance with the dredge off" this harbour. 
I came home with little desire to see Brixham 



I have before me a small specimen of Pecten oj)er- 
cularis, which I have kept for some days in a glass 
phial of sea-water. The transparency of the vessel ^ 
enables me to observe it and to watch its motions with 
advantage. An object of unwonted beauty indeed it 
is. Its ordinarv condition is to lie with its valves 


separated to the distance of about one-sixth of an 
inch. In this state I will describe it. The open 
space is occupied by what seems a fleshy cushion, 
extending from one valve to the other all round, but. 
just within their edge. It is of a delicate flesh-colour, 
with mottlings of dark brown, making a kind of 
irregular pattern with transverse bands; a close 
examination, however, shews that this substance is 
divided into two parts ; for when the animal is quite 
at ease, it is seen to gape, with a fissure parallel to 
the valves, widely enough to give us a peep into 
the internal structure. This is, in fact, tlie mantle, 
of which these two parts are the thick and glandular 
edges. Around its circumference, on each portion, 
just where it is in contact with the valve, there are 
set a great number of tentacles, — delicate thread-like 
organs, tapering to a fine point, and of a pellucid 
white appearance ; they are capable of being protru- 
ded and retracted at the will of the animal ; I have 
occasionally seen some of them extended to a length 
equal to the diameter of the shell. They are more 
commonly contracted to about one-fourth of that 
length, or even much less, with the points curled up ; 
but frequently the animal protrudes them to their 
utmost extent, bending them back above the edges 
of the shell, and waving them slowly in every 
direction. Sometimes one or two only are protruded, 
and the others kept short. Along the very edge of 
each division of the mantle, bordering the fissure, is 
another row of similar tentacles, smaller in their 
dimensions. But the most beautiful feature of 
this animal is yet to be described. In the line of the 


larger tentacles, and alternating witli tliem, is seen 
a row of minute circular points, of high refractive 
power, possessing all the brilliancy of precious stones. 
They look indeed like diamonds of the first water, 
each set in a ring or socket of black substance, which 
greatly enhances their beauty. They are about 
half as numerous again as the radiating grooves of 
the shell ; but are not set with perfect regularity. 
They are still less uniform in size, some having a 
diameter twice as great as others. These are 
believed to be eyes, and certainly they are well 
placed for enabling the animal to watch the world 
around it. It is very sensitive, withdrawing its ten- 
tacles and mantle, and bringing the valves of its shell 
together, on any shock being given to the vessel in 
wdiich it is kept. I observe, however, that it will not 
actually close the valves, unless it be repeatedly dis- 
turbed, or unless the shock be violent; contenting 
itself with narrowing the opening to the smallest 
space appreciable ; yet even then the two rows of 
gem-like eyes are distinctly visible, peering out from 
the almost closed shell ; the two appearing like one 
undulating row from the closeness of their contiguity. 
Those who are familiar with the pincushions, so fre- 
quently made between the valves of these very Scallop 
shells, can hardly fail to be struck with the resem- 
blance borne by the living animal to its homely but 
useful substitute; and the beautiful eyes them- 
selves might be readily mistaken for two rows of 
diamond-headed pins, carefully and regularly stuck 
along the two edges of the pincushion. A friend, 
to wdiom I showed it when nearly closed, compared 



it not unaptly to a lady's ring set with small 
My attention was attracted to the Pecten hy this 
curious circumstance, that it was adhering by one 
valve (the flat one) to the side of the glass phial, at 
some distance from the bottom. On close examina- 
tion with a lens, I discovered that it was attached by 
a very delicate byssus. Curious to ascertain how it 
contrived to mount from the bottom to this position, 
I touched it slightly, and caused it to loose its hold. In 
the course of half an hour I found that it had resumed 
the same position again. I again disturbed it, and 
began to watch its motions. It was lying with the 
convex valve downwards on the bottom of the phial. 
The first thing I observed was the thrusting forth of 
the delicate little foot, an organ wdiich seemed to me 
appropriately named, when I marked its close resem- 
blance in form to a human foot and leg, enveloped in 
a white stocking. What I may call the sole of this 
tiny foot was pressed against the side of the glass, 
feeling about from place to place ; while with the lens 
I could distinctly see, in the part corresponding to the 
toe, the opening of the fleshy lips, or sides of the 
grooves, in Avhich the threads of byssus are said to be 
formed. While it was thus engaged my surprise was 
excited by seeing it suddenly throw itself with a jerk 
into an upright position ; but the action was too 
startling to enable me to see how it was performed. 
I again laid it prone, and though for a moment it 
closed the valves, it presently opened them again, and 
performed a similar feat. This was followed by seve- 
ral leaps in different directions, in quick successioii ; 


but I was still at a loss to know the modus operandi. 
It appeared to me certain, tliat the ordinary supposition, 
viz., that the action is performed by the Tigorous 
opening and shutting of the valves, was not the correct 
one. At length a favourable obsen^ation gave me a 
suspicion of the truth. I perceived the lips of the 
mantle, (which were hekl in contact, though the valves 
were considerably separated,) suddenly open to a partial 
extent, as if hy a hlowiny from loiUdn. At this 
instant there was a leap in the opposite direction, 
attended with a considerable agitation in the water. 
With this clue, I observed more definitely. Having 
rendered the water a little turbid, in order the more 
distinctly to see any motion of the particles suspended 
in it, several leaps confirmed the notion that had sug- 
gested itself to me. The mode of proceeding is as 
fbllov7S : wdien the Pecten is about to leap, it draws in 
as much water as it can contain within the mantle, 
while the lips are held firmly in contact. At tins 
instant the united edges of the lips are slightly drawn 
inward, and this action gives sure warning of the com- 
ing leap. The moment after this is observed, the 
animal, doubtless by muscular contraction, exerts a 
strong force upon the contained water, while it relaxes 
the forced contact of the lips at any point of the cir- 
cumference, according to its pleasure. The result is, 
the forcible ejection of a jet of water, yro?;^ that i)oint\ 
which, by the resilience of its impact upon the sur- 
rounding fluid, throws the animal in the opposite 
direction, with a force proportioned to that of \h.Q jet 
dean. The action mav be well imitated bv the human 
mouth blowing a stream of air from any determined 


point, while the lips are held firmly together at all 
other points. The resemblance, indeed, of the mantle 
to the human lips performing such an action, (a 
resemblance perhaps more close than flattering) struck 
me as ludicrously faithful. Nor was the appearance less 
suggestive of a pair of bellows without a nose, of 
which the valves were the covers, and the mantle the 
leathers, discharging their contents from aiiy part of 
their sides. 

That the Pecten widely opens and forcibly closes 
its valves, if left uncovered hy the water, is doubtless 
correct ; I have seen my specimen perform such an 
action, and perhaps it might by such means jerk itself 
from place to place with considerable agility. But I 
do not think so rude a mode of progression could 
enable it to select the direction of its leaps, which 
under water appears to me to be determined with 
accurate precision. 

I obsei-ved also a fact which appeared confiiTuatory 
of the supposition that the brilliant points among the 
tentacles are organs of vision ; viz., that in the ordi- 
nary state of expansion, and when about to make these 
quick movements, the gem-like points are so situated 
as just to project beyond the margin of the shell. 
So that when the latter is viewed perpendicularly, the 
eye of the beholder looking down upon its convexity, 
the minute points are seen, all round its circumference, 
just, and hut just, peeping from under its edge. It is 
clear that if they are eyes, tliis secures to them the 
widest range of vision with the least possible exposure. 

The death of my little Pecten gave me the opportu- 
nity of submitting some of the gemmeous specks to 


the microscope. Witli a power of 220 diameters, I 
distinctly perceived a large lens, a glassy coat invest- 
ing this, which itself was huried for more than half 
its volume in an investiture apparently granular of 
a yellowish brown colour, having an ill-defined circle 
near its anterior side, of a blackish hue. Under 
pressure with the compressorium, the lens was mani- 
festlv circular ; the coloured socket discharo-ed dark 
granules, and from the darkest part a deep crimson 
pigment, which did not appear to be granular 
(See Plate III. fig. 5.) 

I submitted portions of the gills also to the same 
magnifying power. Each of the four lamina consists 
of a vast number of straight slender transparent fila- 
ments, evidentlv tubular, and about r^th of an inch 
in diameter, arranged side by side ; or rather of o?ie 
filament, excessively long, reverted upon itself 
again and again, at both the free and the at- 
tached end of the laminse, throughout its whole ex- 
tent. This repeated filament is armed on each of two 
opposite sides mth a line of vibrating cilia, the two 
lines moving in contrary directions ; by the action of 
which a current of water is made continually to flow 
up and do^^Tl each of these delicate filaments ; so that 
the blood which circulates in their interior (for they 
are doubtless blood-vessels) is continually exposed 
throughout this its long and tortuous course to the 
action of oxygen. 

Like all organic .functions, the action of these cilia 
is not under the will of the animal. It is said that if 
during life a small portion of the gills be cut ofl*, the 
motion of the ciha will convey the fragment swiftly away, 


with a smooth easy motion, through the surronnding 
fluid, in a definite direction. It does not cease even 
with the hfe of the animal. The specimen which I 
examined had been dead at least fifteen hours, yet 
when I placed the torn fragments of the branchise, one 
after another, beneath the microscope, the energy of 
the ciliary action, as the wave flowed with uniform 
regularity up one side and down the other of every • 
filament, filled me with astonishment. Even the next 
morning, twenty-six hours after death, when the 
tissues of the filaments were partially dissolved, the 
ciliary motion was still going on, on portions that 
preserved their integrity. 

Surelv, when a Christian naturalist examines the 
more recondite anatomy, not of the human body merely, 
but of any, even the lowest, foims of animal being, he 
is constrained to say with the Psalmist, " I will praise 
Thee ; for [all is] fearfully and wonderfully made : 
marvellous are thy works, and that my soul knoweth 
right well !" 


I took another look at my pretty little rock-basin 
at Oddicombe. It is a deep, oval, cup-like cavity, 
about a yard wide in the longest diameter, and of the 
same depth, hewn out, as it were, from the solid lime- 
stone, with as clean a surface, as if a stone-mason had 
been at work there. It is always, of course, full of 
water, and, except when a heavy sea is rolling in, of 
brilhant clearness. All round the margin are growing 
tufts of the common Coralline, forming a whitish 


busily fringe, reaching from the edge to about six 
inches down : a few plants of the Bladder Fucus are 
scattered around and above the brim ; and the arching 
fronds of the Sweet Laminaria, that I before spoke of, 
hang down nearly to the bottom, closely resembling, 
except in their deep-brown hue, the hart's tongue fern 
that so profusely adorns the sides of our green lanes. 
Below the Coralline level are a few small red sea- weeds, 
as Rhodymenia palmata ; and the dark purple 
Chondrus crisjnfs growing in fine tufts reflecting a 
rich steel-blue iridescence. But all the lower parts 
of the sides and the bottom are abnost quite free from 
sea-weeds, with the exception of a small Ulva or two, 
and a few incrusting patches of the Coralline-base, 
not yet shot u^) into branches, but resembling smooth 
pink lichens. The smooth surface of the rock in these 
lower parts is quite clean, so that there is nothing to 
intercept the sight of the Actinice, that project from 
the hollows, and spread out their broad circular disks 
like flat blossoms adhering to the face of the interior. 
There are many of these, all of the species A. bellis, 
and all of the dark chocolate varietv, streaked with 
scarlet ; and they are fine in the ratio of the depth at 
which they live ; one at the very bottom is fully three 
inches in diameter. 

There is something exceedingly charming in such 
a natural vivarium as this. When I go down on my 
knees upon the rocky margin, and bring my face 
nearly close to the water, the whole interior is dis- 
tinctly visible. The various forms and beautiful tints 
of the sea-weeds, especially the puii^le flush of the 
Chondrus, are well worthy of admiration ; and I can 


see the little shrimps and other Crustacea busily 
swimming from weed to weed, or pursuing their in- 
stinctive occupations among the fronds and branches, 
— an ample forest to them. Tiny fishes of the Blennv 
genus are also hiding under the shadow of the tufts, 
and occasionally darting out with quivering tail ; 
and one or two Brittlestars are deliberately crawling 
about, by means of their five long and flexible amis, in 
a manner that seems a ludicrous caricature of a man 
climbing uj) by his hands and feet, — only you must 
suppose an additional arm growing from the top of his 
head. The variety of their colours, and the singular but 
always elegant patterns in which they are arranged, 
render these little star-iishes attractive. 

Such a calm clear little well as this, among the 
rugged rocks, stored with animal and vegetable life, 
is an object well calculated to attract a poet's fancy. 
The following description must have been drawn from 
just such a rock-pool, and most true to nature it is. 

In hollows of the tide-worn reef, 
Left at low water glistening in the sun, 
Pellucid pools, and rocks in miniature. 
With their small fry of fishes, crusted shells. 
Rich mosses, tree-like sea-weed, sparkling pebbles. 
Enchant the eye, and tempt the eager hand, 
To violate the fairy paradise, 



At Petit Tor in March I found, adhering to the 
under side of a rough stone, a fine specimen of the 
Rosy Feather-star. It was of the size of Prof. Forbes' 


figure, but was mucli more beautiful than I had sup- 
posed, even from that representation. It was marked 
all over with alternate bands or patches of crimson 
and yellow, not very regularly ; the latter colour 
studded with red dots. The larger dorsal filaments 
were thirtv, the smaller, I think only two or three. 
The pinnse were forty (not 34) on each side of 
each ann. T saw the hooked claws of the larger fila- 
ments, but could not make out the points of the 

In captivity the Feather-star sits upon the frond 
of a Sea-weed, or on a projecting angle of rock, which 
it grasps very firmly with its clawed filaments ; so finnly 
that it is difficult to tear it from its hold. When 
violence is used, it catches hold of its support or any 
other object within reach, with the tips of its arms, 
which it hooks down for the purpose, and with its 
pinnae, so that it seems furnished with so many claws, 
the hard stony nature of which is revealed by the 
creaking, scratching noise they make as they are 
forced from any hold, as if they were made of glass. 
I was surprised to observe that several of the aiTus 
were unsymmetrically short; and examining these 
with a lens, saw distinctly that each had been broken 
off" and was renewed; the new part agreeing in struc- 
ture and colour with the rest, but the joints were much 
less in diameter; and this diff'erence was strongly 
marked at the point of union, the first of the new 
joints being not more than one- third as wide as its 
predecessor. The appearance much reminded me of 
a Lizard renewing its tail. 

In sitting, the Feather-star bends its arms with a 


sigmoid curve, the tips bending upward. It waves 
them now and then, hut not much ; and remains long 
without moving from its hold. Though I repeatedly 
took it out of water, remo.ving it forcibly, it manifested 
no tendency to voluntary dislocation. 


One of the most wildly romantic scenes in this 
neighbourhood is Watcombe, about a mile from 
Marychurch, on the Teignmouth road. A narrow 
lane, muddy from a little streamlet that oozes down 
it, but fringed with primroses and violets, leads oif 
from the highway on the right, and presently opens a 
magnificent prospect of the sea, with a handsome 
villa just in front in the midst of ornamental grounds. 
A step or two farther, and we are on a large area of 
broken ground, most irregular and uneven, but covered 
with the fine close turf, peculiar to downs, on which 
the sheep are tranquilly grazing. On the left, rise 
abruptly from the turf, perpendicular cliff's of red 
sand-stone of stupendous height, their summits cloth- 
ed with turf and thickets of furze ; so angular and 
uniform are thev that they look like the ruined 
walls of some Cyclopean castle. The place is formed 
by what geologists call a fault, the ground having at 
some period fallen in from the higher to the lower 
level, a catastrophe which explains the uneven cha- 
racter of the dowm, the hills and vales, the chasms 
and pits, that are so remarkable here. 

The fault, — which is certainly one that we cannot 
very harshly blame, since its effect is so beautiful, — 


is still at a great elevation above the sea-level ; and 
when we have made our way to its sea-ward margin, 
and look down upon the pebbly beach, we find that 
we can reach it only by a- narrow zigzag path, or 
almost a succession of narrow steps, so steep and 
hazardous that the utmost circumspection is necessary 
to descend it with safety. 

Once down, we can walk along the rough platforms 
and ledges of sandstone that extend along at the foot 
of the lofty cliffs towards the north from the cove. 
The strata form narrow shelves with sharp edges, 
sufficiently level to be traversed without difficulty, 
but gradually rising from the horizontal, so that we 
cannot pursue any given stratum beyond a short 
distance, as we find it carrying us too far above the 
sea, but must successively descend to lower ones. 

In the crevices and shallow pools of the ledges 
between tide-marks I observed numerous colonies of 
Actinia hellis, a variety more than usually pied with 
white on a dark ground: and the fine A. crassicornis 
was common in the darker fissures. It was here that 
I saw for the first time the largest of our naked-gilled 
Mollusca, the Sea Lemon, Doris tuherculata. It was 
lying in a narrow horizontal shelf under the shadow 
of a rock, whence it had doubtless fallen after it had 
been forsaken by the tide. My first momentary 
impression was that a large limpet had been extracted 
from its shell and thrown there to die, but an instant's 
examination told me what it was. I carried it to a 
shallow pool and threw it in; and presently it turned 
itself on its foot, and protruding its two curiously-rib- 
bed tentacles from their holes, began to glide along 


the bottom, expanding, as it proceeded, its beautiful 
starry flower of branchiae in the centre of its back. 
When this and the horns are concealed, the animal 
bears a curious resemblance in size, form, colour and 
warty surface to the half of a lemon, divided longitudi- 


These two days past I have been experimenting on 
the dye of Purjnira lapillus. Hundreds of this shell 
may be seen adhering to the rocks between tide-marks, 
some quite white, or discoloured only with age, while 
others, (frequently all found in one particular locality) 
are rather prettily marked with three broad bands of 
yellow or brown, running spirally round the whorls. 
The latter variety is much more furrowed than the 
white variety, and the bands of colour are often divided 
into several narrow lines separated by the ridges. The 
inner part of the mouth, especially in old specimens, 
is often tinged with purple, which may help an unini- 
tiated observer to identify the species. They congre- 
gate together, and you may easily collect, at low-water, 
as many as you please. The best way to kill them 
that I know is to break the shell to pieces with a 
hammer, moderating the blow^ cautiously, so as not to 
crush the soft animal, and then, having shaken ofi'the 
fragments, throw it into a basin of cold fresh-water, in 
which the creature presently dies. With the shell 
unbroken, I find it has the power of resisting the 
action of fresh-water for a time far longer than would 
be fatal to many marine Gasteropoda ; for some that 


I placed in a basin of fresh-water, proved to be quite 
uninjured when I broke the shells eighteen hours 
afterwards, as was seen by their forcible contraction 
when divested of their shelly covering. Doubtless 
this power of resisting the action of fresh-Avater con- 
sists in the close-fitting operculum, which is forcibly 
drawn in under the stimulus, so as to keep the water 
perfectly out. 

When the animals appear dead, examine them for 
a vessel of yellow or cream-coloured matter, that runs 
diagonally across the body, behind that projecting 
veil under which the tentacles retire when contracted. 
It is sufficiently conspicuous, flat, somewhat wrinkled, 
as if not quite full, with one margin blackish. Insert 
into the membrane, which is very tender, the point of 
a sharp pair of scissors, or a needle, and open the vein, 
which you will find filled with a substance exactly 
resembling in colour and consistence the pus or mat- 
ter formed in a boil. You will not find much ; that 
of a large Turpura I managed to spread over a space 
of calico as large as a shilling. From its viscid con- 
sistence it is difficult to use mth a pen, and I do not 
know how it may be uniformly diluted ; but with a 
small camel's-hair pencil I have used it with much 
more facility. 

As soon as the matter is applied to the linen, its 
hue is a rich '' Ejng's yellow," but becomes in a few 
minutes a delicate pea-green. In about an hour, if the 
weather be cloudy, it has become a yellow grass-green, 
from which it slowly and imperceptibly turns to a blue 
green, thence to indigo, and thence to blue. A red 
tinge now becomes apparent, generally in parts, caus- 



iug the hue to become first violet, then a pm^le more 
and more tinged with red, till at length, after five or 
six hours (in a room without direct sun -light) it 
assumes its final tint, a rather dull purplish crimson, 
or lake. The direct beams of the sun, however, 
greatly expedite the process, and at any stage will 
carry the remaining stages through to completion in 
a few minutes. 


OS the Tor Abbey sands and headland, the receding 
tide leaves bare a large surface of rock, chiefly sand- 
stone and conglomerate. Little shallow pools occur 
abundantly, filled with Al^ce of various species, among 
which colonies of Anthea cereus, of both the grey and 
the green varieties, are common. The soft sandstone 
is inhabited by Pholas dactylus, and Vli. imrva', the 
orifices of whose burrows reveal their secret ; the first 
stroke of the hammer on the stone causes the animal 
to contract in alarm, and the result is an instant 
ejection of a slender jet of clear water from the hole, 
to the distance of several inches. 

Under loose stones I found Doris hilamellata nu- 
merous, four, five and six under one stone, mostly 
spawning ; one specimen of the blackish-grey variety of 
D. pilosa occurred among them. The soft spongy 
texture of the cloak in this species gives it a character 
very difi'erent from that of the former. In the same 
situations also I found several of the pretty little 
<^^\iOVi'$> %1'^x\q\j {Asterina yihhosa ;) also the young 
of Trochus ziziphiniis, and a lump of rock covered with 


living Serjmlm, tlie expansions of whose fans in cap- 
tivity, and the use of the stoppers, — ^yere highly 



The respiration of many of the hivalve mollusca is 
eftected hy means of a siphon, the two extremities of 
which are situated close together, and a,re often 
united so as at first to appear but one tube. A glance 
at the very tip, however, even in this case, shews 
that there are two openings, one of which is a little 
smaller than the other, and commonlv this suhordi- 
nate orifice diverges at a slight angle from the princi- 
pal one. The latter is the entrance, the former the 
exit for the water, a perpetual change of which is ab- 
solutely indispensable to the life of the animal. The 
interior of these tubes is said to be lined with innu- 
merable delicate cilia ; by the action of which the 
surrounding water is drawn towards the entering ori- 
fice, and conveyed in a strong current through the 
tube over the surface of the gills. Then, having 
been deprived of its oxygen, it is poured through the 
other tube and expelled in a jet at its extremity, by a 
similar machinery. 

This apparatus of double siphonal tubes is princi- 
pally developed in those species which burrow, 
whether in sand, mud, wood or stone. As the bur- 
rowing bivalve usually, if not always, dwells in the 
interior of the passage it has excavated, it is needful 
that there should be a communication with the exter- 
nal water, and hence a hole is always found extending 
to the surface of the material bored. The entering 


and departing currents keep this passage clear, a pro- 
cess which in mud or sand might seem at first not 
very easy of accomplishment. It is facilitated, how- 
ever, by the faculty which the boring bivalves have 
of lengthening the siphonal tubes at will ; and the 
degree to which this may be accomplished depends 
on the depth of the cavity which the species is ac- 
customed to make. 

If we take one of the stone-boring Mollusca, a 
Pholas or a Saxicava for example, from its excava- 
tion, without injuring the animal, and place it in a 
glass vessel of sea-water, it will not be difficult to de- 
tect the currents in question, even with the naked 
eye ; though a lens of moderate power will render 
them more distinctly appreciable. The vessel should 
be so placed as that the light may be nearly, but not 
exactly, opposite to the eye. By this arrangement 
the minute atoms of floating matter are illuminated 
while the back-ground is dark, and these by their 
motion clearly reveal the currents of the fluid in which 
they are suspended. A few moments' practice will 
enable even an unaccustomed eye to perceive the 
atoms converging from all points around, with an 
even but increasing velocity, towards the principal 
tube, down which they disappear like the streams of 
passengers and traffic in the neighbourhood of a great 
city, converging towards it as to a common centre of 
attraction by a hundred different routes. The current 
of the expelling tube is even still more marked in its 
character; a forcible jet of water is continuously 
ejected from this orifice, which draws the surrounding 
particles into its vortex, and shoots them forward to a 


distance of many inches. It is by the expulsive force 
of this anal current, chiefly, that the passage is kept 
free from the deposit of mud and other substances, 
which would otherwise soon choke it up. 

A fresh supply of water for respiration, and its 
dismissal when no longer fit for use, are efficiently 
provided for by this contrivance. But since many 
particles of matter float in the water, which from 
their form or other qualities, might be hurtful to the 
delicate tissues of the viscera to be traversed, how is 
the entrance of these to be guarded against in an in- 
discriminating current ? A beautiful contrivance is 
provided for this necessity. The margin of the enter- 
ing siphon, and sometimes, though more rarely, of 
the ejecting one, is set round with a number of short 
tentacular processes, varying indeed in their length, 
but the longest scarcely more than equalling half the 
diameter of the mouth of the tube. In Saxicava 
rugosa, which bores through and through, with small 
holes, the hardest limestone of our coast, these ten- 
tacular appendages are found fringing both the tubes. 
The tentacles in this species are simple, and appear 
as if cut ofl' transverselv ; and some are not more 
than half as long as the others, with which they irre- 
gularly alternate. The object of this diversity in 
length, will be manifested presently. In Pholas 
parva, the processes are few and short, and are confin- 
ed to the receiving tube, from the interior margin of 
which they project, towards the centre. But it is in 
Pholas dactylus, a noble species of large size that 
excavates the softer rocks on our shores, that this 
apparatus is developed with peculiar beauty, and its 


use is made most clearly manifest. The tentacular 
filaments are in this case also confined to the oral 
tube. They are numerous, each forming a little 
tree, with pinnate branches, bearing no small resem- 
blance to the flower of feathery branchiae, that ex- 
pands around the mouth of a Holotlmria. These 
branched tentacula are ordinarily bent down across 
the mouth of the tube, the longest of them just 
meetiDg in the centre; alternating with these are 
placed others of similar structure, but inferior size ; 
and the interspaces are occupied by others smaller 
still, and simply pinnate ; so that when the whole 
occupy their ordinary transverse position, the small 
ones fill up the angles of the larger, and the branches 
of all form a net- work of exquisite tracery, spread 
across the orifice, through the interstices or meshes of 
which the current of entering water freely percolates, 
while they exclude all except the most minute floating 
atoms of extraneous matter. The accompanying 
figure, which I have drawn from a fine specimen of 
Fholas dactylus just obtained from the submerged 
sandstone at Tor Abbey, and at this moment receiving 
and ejecting its currents in my glass jar, as placidly 
as if it were still ensconced in its own quiet hole, will 
give some idea of the form of this tentacular net, a 
portion only of which is here given, that the ramifi- 
cation may be seen with greater clearness. (See Plate 
11. fig. 7.) 

(P. S.) After a while, these beautiful organs lost 
their elegance, and shrank up into thick wart-like 
bodies, merely digitated at their tips, in which, if I 
had not personally, so to speak, known the individual 




animal, I sliould not have been able to trace any re- 
semblance to the ramified trees that had at first 
guarded the orifice. It would appear therefore that 
they are to be seen in perfection only when the Pholas 
is in high health, and newly taken from its rock. 

This contrivance, or rather this series of contri- 
vances, for the health and comfort of a poor shell-fish 
that spends its whole life buried in a sepulchre of 
stone, may seem to some but an insignificant matter. 
But it strikes my mind with power as an example of 
the beneficent care of God over all his creatures, and 
of the infinite resources of Divine wisdom in w^hich 
creation has been planned and executed. And so far 
from the meanness of the object on which such care 
is bestowed rendering it less worthy of remark, that 
very circumstance ought to enhance our admiration. 
It seems less difficult to conceive of the tender bene- 
ficence of God exercised towards an angel, or towards 
man who was made in his own image ; but that the 
Mind of the High and Lofty One that inhabiteth eter- 
nity should occupy itself about the feelings of such a 
worm as this, is marvellous indeed ! It is one of those 
innumerable examples that occur to the Christian 
philosopher, in which " the invisible things of Him from 
the creation of the world are clearly seen, being un- 
derstood by the things that are made, even his eternal 
power and Godhead." 

anstey's cove. 

Ajwil Qt7i. A lovely spring morning ; one of those 
that make one say with the Koyal Poet of Israel, " Lo, 


the winter is past, the rain is over and gone ; the 
flowers appear on the earth ; the time of the singing 
of birds is come ; and the voice of the turtle is heard 
in our land." I took my basket of collecting jars, 
my hammer and chisel, in my hand, and determined to 
explore some of the rocky coves that I had not yet 
visited, for it was spring-tide. It is a favourable cir- 
cumstance for the littoral naturalist on the Devonshire 
coast, that lowest water on the days of spring-tide is 
near the middle of the day. This is a point that 
should be attended to in selecting a site for such re- 
searches, as in some places the lowest water might 
occur at a much less convenient hour of the day. 
At Margate, at Portsmouth, and at Whitehaven for 
example, it is about six o'clock in the morning and 
evening on the days of new and full moon. 

It was exhilarating to walk over the lofty Babbi- 
combe Downs, and gaze out upon the wdde expanse 
of sea, its sparkling azure speckled over with ships 
and boats whose white sails gleamed brilliantly beneath 
the rays of the mounting sun. 

There lie the ships, 
Their sails all loose, their streamers rolling out 
With sinuous flow and swell, like water-snakes, 
Curling aloft ; the waves are gay with boats. 
Pinnace and barge and coracle ; — ^the sea 
Swarms like the shore with life. O what a sight 
Of beauty ! 


There was breeze enough to raise up a curling ripple 
fringed here and there with a foaming mantle, and to 
mark with a long line of white the loot of the red clifts 


that receded away to the northward. Beautiful these 
looked in their bold fantastic forms, as they receded, 
headland after headland, from the palpable grandeur 
of those close at hand to the hazy indistinctness of 
those a dozen miles off; the ruddy hue gradually and 
insensibly changing into the clear decided blue of the 
distant line of coast. ' The handsome white villas 
above Petit Tor and Watcombe reflected the sun, as 
did presently the houses of Teignmouth, and its con- 
spicuous church-tower, just opening behind a project- 
ing cliff; and on the blue shore across the broadly- 
incurved bay, the terraces of Exmouth were singularly 
distinct. The little hamlet of Babbicombe was be- 
hind, and below^ my feet were the gardens and shrub- 
beries of several villas, the trees and bushes in which 
were just beginning to burst their leaf-buds. I did 
not hear the voice of the turtle, it is true, — it had 
hardly as yet arrived — but the carol of the lark was 
blithely pouring forth, " at Heaven's gate," as Shak- 
speare says, far above even these elevated clifis. Far 
up, far up, higher and higher into the radiant dazzling 
sky he soars, and still he struggles up and up, till the 
watering eye can with difficulty find the tiny speck, — 
yet his heart all the while is dow^n in some humble 
tussock of grass. 

" Wild is thy lay, and loud, 
Far ill the downy cloud. 
Love gives it energy, love gave it birth : 
Where on thy dewy wing. 
Where art thou journeying ? 
Thy lay is in heaven, thy love is on earth." 


The very loftiest part of the down terminates in an 

70 anstey's cove. 

abrupt precipice of compact limestone, which has 
"been quarried away for some distance inland, leaving 
only the flat base like a stone-cutter's yard a little 
above the water's edge, to mark where the cliff for- 
merly reached. Alongside of this base, as at a 
natural pier, craft of considerable size lie, and receive 
their cargoes of the quarried marble, and one or more 
may commonly be seen here. I inquired of a quarry- 
man if there were any practicable access to this plat- 
form, but found there was none but a narrow and pre- 
carious path from the summit, available only to the 
practised feet of the stone-workers. Nor can they 
always tread it with impunity ; he mentioned a quarry- 
man who was lately dashed to pieces by falling from 
near the summit although he had been nearly fifty 
years in the occupation. 

This abrupt head forms one boundary of Anstey's 
Cove, a favourite resort of Torquay visitors, and a 
very picturesque scene. A beach of pebbles of snowy 
whiteness, among which the fossil madrepores for 
which the vicinity is famed, are often found, is divid- 
ed by a projecting pile of rocks into two coves, the 
one of which is overlooked by the stupendous lime- 
stone precipice, and the other merges into a shore 
strewn with boulders, beneath a lower cliflf of slate 
and shale. 

I found the base of the precipitous rocks to the 
south of this latter cove very productive. Beneath 
the shadow of the cliffs, animals are much more 
numerous under the limestone boulders, than they 
are under similar stones where the sun shines, though 
only just left uncovered by the tide. Very fine tufts 


of Iridcea edulis and of Delesseria scmguinea grow in 
the shallow but shaded pools near low water mark. 
Among the creatures I brought home were several of 
the Common Squat Lobster f Galathea rugosaj and 
a fine specimen of the much more beautiful Gal. siri- 
gosa, with its livery of scarlet and azure. Trochus 
ziziplii7}us was common.; Cyprcea Europ(Ea, common ; 
Pecten distort us, several ; Pecten opercularis, small ; 
AnomicR and Serpulce, common on stones; two or three 
Botrylli; two of a beautiful Pleurohranchus ; Doris 
tuherculata, D. Johnstoni f^J, and another Don's ; 
Ophiocoma rostila, abundant, and in much variety ; 
one had the body velvet-black ; — Polynoe cirrata ; 
Actinia alba, and one or two other small species ; 
Echinus esculent us '} ; a rough Sponge ; a small 
Crab ; and a mass of eggs, probably of a crab. 


The most interesting of these captures was the pair of 
Pleurohranchi. The species proved to be P.plumu- 
la, an animal very rarely seen by naturalists, and 
a variety more than usually rich in colouring. It 
therefore appeared to me worth while to make careful 
drawings and notes from these individuals, which 
lived for some time with me (See Plate 11.) 

Length when crawling If in. breadth f in. The 
form oval, convex ; the cloak ample, smooth ; the 
oral veil, undulate at front margin, the tentacular 
sides produced into blunt angles, and the centre 
notched. Dorsal tentacles blunt, curved outwards, 
projecting a little beyond the veil. Eyes small, black 


round points, beneatli the skin, at the outer and upper 
part of the base of dorsal tentacles. 

General colour golden or orange chrome ; the veil 
and foot rather paler; under side of the foot (fig. 2.) 
approaching to flesh-colour; showing a large black 
cloud in the centre. The same spot seen dorsally 
(fig. 1.) makes a cloud of brown, slightly tinged with red 
in front. In this part, over the internal dark body, are 
many dots which appear pellucid, and two or three 
larger than the rest, through which the dark body 
appears ; the yellow mantle between the dots assumes 
a reticular appearance. The tentacles, especially 
the dorsal pair, have a central line of dark brown ; 
all are tubular, by the bending together of their sides, 
but open in front and beneath, where the edges do 
not quite meet. The branchial plume projects from 
between the mantle and foot in crawling ; it is trans- 
parent, and appears when viewed from above, to be 
composed of many triangular laminae set imbricate, 
and pointing backwards. Each lamina shows trans- 
verse wrinkles. (See fig. 3.) Viewed laterally it is 
seen to consist of a central stem, with about 18 pinna? 
on each side, each pinna being again pinnated on 
each side (fig. 5.) The stem, pinnae and pinnulse are all 
dilated, inwardly, so that the stem, which is narrow 
and slender at (5), is wide at (3), and the pinnoe are 
the triangular laminae, whose wrinkles are in fact the 
pinnulae. The organ is connected with the bottom of the 
lateral sulcus for about two -thirds of its length by a sort 
of membrane. The plume can scarcely be recognized 
in its two aspects, even though examined again and 
again in qjiick succession. It appears very sensitive 


and changes much in appearance by its various 
degrees of contraction and expansion. Fig. 4 is a por- 
tion of fig. 3 more carefully drawn, and more enlarged. 

Of the two specimens found, one was rather paler. 
In captivity they were sluggish, fond of hiding 
among the fronds and leaves of Delesseria and Iridcea; 
but at times gliding freely like a Doris. They swam on 
the surface by the foot reversed, and then left behind 
a great wake of clear viscid jelly. They were beauti- 
ful animals. After keeping them in health about a 
fortnight, I put one into fresh water to kill it, for 
preservation. This, however, was not so readily fatal 
to it as I had supposed, for at the end of half an hour I 
found by its contraction when touched, that it was still 
alive. Probably the mode in which it had contracted 
on being put in, the foot being narrowed, and the 
edges of the mantle being incurved on all sides around 
the foot, may have in some measure prevented the 
access of the water to the vital parts. At the end of 
that time I replaced it in sea-water, when it soon 
partially recovered its activity, relaxing its mantle, 
and contracting it dorsally so as to expose the 
sulcus between it and the foot greatly, protruding the 
tentacles and veil, and the branchial plume. Thus I 
was enabled to get a much better sight of these parts. 

As soon as it was replaced in the sea-water, a 
quantity of white mucus was discharged from the 
whole surface, most copiously from the foot, which 
as it lay on its back, was uppermost. This mucus, 
gradually, by the contractions of the animal, was 
accumulated in a knob at the posterior end of the 
foot, and then thrown ofi". The reticulate structure 



of tlie mantle-integument "was much more distinct 
than in health ; it was seen to form a delicate lace- 
work of yellow fibres all over the surface, covering 
and inclosing a pellucid parenchyma. 

The animal evidently had been injured by its bath 
of fresh water; for it lay on its back, expanding and 
contracting its various parts, without the power 
of turning over to crawl, or even of adhering by the 
foot when turned, but rolling helplessly back. The 
form and appearance too were very different from 
those of health, the sulcus being widely exposed by 
the contraction of the mantle, much like the figure in 
Prof. Jones' 'Animal Kingdom,' which I should think 
was taken from a specimen in spirit; it does not 
much resemble mine in health. 

Eunning along near the edge of the foot, parallel 
with it, on the upper surface, is a narrow projecting 
lip or ledge, more opaque than the surrounding parts, 
and capable of being slightly raised. Between this 
and the oral veil is the mouth, from which in my 
sick specimen was projected a large pear-shaped or 
vase-shaped body, of which the narrow part, which 
was outward, was wrinkled up, and showed at times a 
small central orifice, triangular in form. The body 
was pellucid with an opaque central nucleus. 

The oral veil is thick, and is deeply grooved 
along each outer edge : the margins of these grooves, 
being infolded, make the oral tentacles. Fig. 6 repre- 
sents the outer side of the left dorsal tentacle ; show- 
ing a sinuosity in the edge of the cleft ; probably acci- 
dental, since I did not observe it in the other tentacle. 

After death the form of the shell could very dis- 


tinctly be traced in the centre of the back. On 
making an incision I found it superficially placed 
within the substance of the mantle, whence it was 
very readily extracted, having apparently no organic 
adhesion to the flesh. A careful examination shews 
a very close agreement with that of PL plumula, which 
I have no doubt it is. Its length was exactly \ inch, 
its breadth a little more than \ inch. It lay over the 
dark brown liver : its own colour was darkish horn, 
tinged with reddish : as it dried, a silvery nacre 
covered it in parts, which gradually extended to the 
whole. There were two radiating depressions on the 


The Dead Man's Fingers — Appearance when contracted — when 
expanded — Beauty of the flower-like Polypes — ^Structure — 
Spiculee — The Polypidom — Zoophytes and Crustacea upon 
Tangle — Small Nudibranchs and their Spawn — The Angled 
Laomedea — Its medusiform Young — Appearance, Manners 
and Structure of the Embryo — Escape of one from the Yesicle 
— Regular Arrangement of the Zoophytes — The Rosy Ane- 
mone — Its Locality — Description — Habits — Structure — The 
Snowy-disked Anemone — Peculiarities of its locality — De- 
scription — The Snake-locked Anemone — Description — Fare- 
well to South Devon, 


At low water, after an unsuccessful hour spent in 
turning stones, I went to the end of the rocks at Petit 
Tor, and by leaping over an inlet through which the 
tide was pouring in and out, reached a mass of rock 
covered with Fitci and Laminarice. Here, growing on 
the side of a deep hole under water, illuminated by 
light proceeding from the far end of the cavernous 
passage, I had for the first time the pleasure of seeing 
Alcyonium digitatum. It was composed of two cy- 
lindrical lobes rounded at the ends, their form sug- 
gesting both of the names vulgarly applied to this 
Zoophyte, of Dead-man's-fingers and Cows' paps, or 
the more elegant appellation, assigned to it by Sir 
John Dalyell, of Mermaid's Glove. By lying down 
and creeping beneath a ledge of rock, and thrusting my 


arm down the hole, I succeeded in laying hold of it, 
and easily detached it from its base without laceration. 
My basket of bottles being at a distance, I gently put 
my prize into my coat-pocket, until I could again 
immerse it in clear sea-water. The lobes were now 
contracted, about as large as a man's forefinger, of a 
cream-white hue, of a smooth surface, except that it 
w^as covered with slight depressions of a long-oval 
form, divided by narrow angular lines. In this state 
I brought it home, and placed it in a glass vase of 
clear sea-water. 

After a few hours how different was its aspect 1 I 
will endeavour to describe it as it lies now before my 
eye ; and the more willingly because neither any de- 
scription that I have met with, nor any figures, give 
an adequate idea of either its form or its surpassing 

I do not mean that its general form and structure 
are not correctly stated, but that the details of the 
beautiful flower-like polypes themselves are not given 
with accuracy. The fingers or lobes are now greatly 
swollen both in length and thickness, the colour is of 
a much purer white, and the substance is almost 
pellucid, especially in those oval, or rather polygonal 
depressions, which I have mentioned above, and which 
are the terminating cells of the aqueducts that run 
through the whole system. They are now, however, 
depressions no longer ; for from each has protruded a 
poh'p)e, which resembles a flower of exquisite beauty 
and perfect symmetry. But how shall I describe one 
of these ? From each of the cells springs a clear 
white tube, translucent, but not perfectly transparent, 


and yet sufficiently so to reveal with perfect distinct- 
ness the few and simple organs contained in the 
interior. Its base is commensurate with the margin 
of the cell from which it springs ; but it tapers up- 
ward to the length of nearly half-an-inch, where it 
dilates into a flower of eight slender and pointed 
petals, which diverge in a trumpet-form. Each 
slightly bulges outward at its junction with the tube, 
so as to give a slightly campanulate outline to the 
flower ; indeed the resemblance to the blossom of a 
C ampanula is sufficiently striking. Examined with 
a lens each petal is perceived to be furnished, on 
each of its two lateral margins, with a row of deli- 
cately slender pinnae or filaments, which are short at 
each extremity, but increase in length, in regular gra- 
dation, towards the middle of the petal. These 
pinnae do not proceed in the same plane, but arch 
outwards, so as greatly to increase the elegance of 
the flower. Submitted to a higher power, the pinnae 
are seen to be roughened, throughout their whole 
length, with numerous prickly rings, somewhat like 
the horns of an antelope. The whole appearance is 
very diff'erent from the broad petals, notched along 
each edge, which are commonly represented.^' (See 
Plate III. fig. 1.) 

* Ellis observed long ago that "each tentaculum or claw had on 
both sides rows of minute short fibres, like the down on some pappous 
seeds of vegetables." (Corall. p. 84.) And this appearance he has 
expressed in the plates of his " Corallines" and of his " Zoophytes." 
But these figures, notwithstanding Dr. Fleming's verdict on their 
accuracy, do not represent very precisely what presents itself to my 
eyes. Sir John Dalyell says, " Each side of the tentaculum is bordered 
by cylindrical fleshy prongs, whence the pectinate aspect." (Rare 
Anim. of Sc. ii. 178.) 


7E Gussc. id ei, UtK 

PrinUd iyJ&JIm4cnAl Walter 



The pinnae are capable of independent motion ; 
one being frequently jerked inwards towards the cen- 
tre of the disk, while its fellow^s on each side remain 
motionless. I cannot detect any appearance of cilia 
on them, nor do I think there are any, for I have seen 
minute suspended particles slowly sink, till they 
rested on the pinnae, without the least indication of a 
vortex or current in the water. 

The beautiful form of the petals above described is 
quite lost after the animal has been about a day in 
captivity. In both of my specimens, though the 
water has been several times renewed, the petals after 
the first day shrank up into short, thick, unshapely 
masses, rudely notched at their edges, and never after- 
wards expanded more than this, though apparently 
healthy in other respects, and sufficiently sensitive to 
handling. Probably the defect in extant representa- 
tions arises from the figures having been copied from 
specimens in this condition. 

In the centre of the floral expansion a narrow slit 
opens into the stomach, a cu]-de-sac of the same 
narrow form, viz. that of a sack when empty, or of a 
pillow-case as it comes from the laundress, flat, thin 
as viewed in one aspect, and wide in another at right 
angles to it. At the bottom it is truncate ; and from 
hence spring off, arching downwards, three threads on 
each side, which are thickened and much contorted in 
their course. These threads appear to form the edges 
of so many delicate membranes, which run up as septa 
connecting the stomach with the exterior parietes of 
the body, and dividing the whole of the space sur- 
rounding this viscus into chambers, perfectly isolated. 


With a strong light behind the animal I distinctly 
perceived a ciliary vibration down the interior of the 
stomach, at least at the two sides when viewed trans- 

The septa are eight in number, but two in every 
polype are destitute of the contorted threads ; which, 
I am inclined to think, where present, run between 
the sides of each septum, this consisting of two 
membranes ; but of this I am not quite certain. 

The base of each polype does not rest like an inde- 
pendent body on the surface of its cell, but springs 
from the circumference of the cell, each polype-base 
being actually contiguous to, and in fact continuous 
with its surrounding neighbours. The polype-skin 
is really a prolongation of the common integument 
of the mass. 

Under a power of 220 diam. a living polype showed 
a current along the pellucid skin ; minute globules 
being carried both upwards and downwards with a 
motion much like the circulation in Char a, &c. I 
saw it most distinctly near the basal part of the ani- 
mal, but whether it was within the substance of the 
skin, or along the interior surface, I could not be 
absolutely certain. It was a very different motion 
from the close and rapid ciliary waves of the stomach, 
which were plainly visible in the same animal. The 
currents must, however, be in the cavity ; for I 
observed the globules follow the outline of one of the 
tortuous threads, and also that of the angle of the 
stomach, whence I must conclude that the whole of 
the interior surface, as well as the various organs, is 
covered with vibratile cilia of excessive tenuity. 


Around the neck of the expanded Polype, that is, 
just below the base of the petals, there are seen by 
means of a lens, a number of short lines placed trans- 
versely. Wi^h a higher power, on the animal being 
subjected to pressure, these are found to be calcareous 
spiculse, arranged in a singular manner, as seen at 
fig. 2. They are fusiform, and slightly knot- 
ted. The basal part of the animal is also studded 
with minute points ; these likewise prove to be 
spiculae, but of different form and appearance, (fig. 3.) 
each consisting of a star of six points, all truncate and 
digitate. These are scattered all over the base, for 
about one-fourth of the height of the Polype, but 
there are rounded accumulations or constellations of 
these stars among the rest, where they are densely 
crowded together. These clusters seem to be arranged 
one in each interspace of the septa ; the former kind 
runs up in points into the base of each petal. 

When the polypidom is carefully cut open length- 
wise, it is seen to be permeated by canals running 
throughout from the base to all parts of the surface, 
where they dilate a little and form the cells, which 
contain the several polypes. Under a microscope, 
the substance which separates the cells, is seen to be 
spongiose, containing a great number of spiculse of 
much larger size than those of the polype-skin. They 
vary in foiTQ, but follow one model, and much resemble 
very gnarled branches of oak, with the branchlets 
broken ofi*, leaving ragged ends. I have figured some 
of them at fig. 4. 


In the large tide-pool at Petit Tor, I pulled up by 


the base a frond of the Digitate Oar-weed, the footstalk 
of which was densely crowded with a parasitical forest 
of the angular stems of Laomedea geniculata as thick 
as they could bristle. A considerable number of 
stems of that lovely feather-like zoophyte, the Crested 
Plumidaria, were also springing from the root of the 
Oar-weed, most of which were studded Avith curiously 
folded ovarian vesicles in various degrees of maturity. 
A small Mantis-shrimp, (CaprellaJ of curious form 
and the most delicate transparency, which I have 
found to make its favourite home upon this zoophyte, 
was upon the plumes in some numbers, and a few 
were also upon the Laomedea. Its habit is to take a 
firm hold of the zoophyte with its hindermost feet, and 
to rear its long spectre-like form in the free water, 
through which it sways backward and forward, catching 
wdth its singularly constructed fore feet for any strag- 
g'ling prey that may be passing, exactly in the manner 
of that curious predaceous insect, which in habit, as 
well as in structure, it so closely resembles. 

Many of the stems of the Laomedea were studded 
with little oval masses of white spawn, each enclosed 
in a ball of transparent jelly, the largest not so big as 
a small pin's head, These were doubtless the spawn- 
masses of the minute Eolides of the section Tergipes, 
so readily distinguished by having the branchise dis- 
posed in large but few club-shaped excrescences, 
growing along each side of the back. 

I put the whole stock into a glass of water; and the 
next morning on searching over it wdth a lens I dis- 
covered adhering to the side of the vase a specimen 
of the pretty Eolis despecta^ which I had no sooner 


extracted with a tube than I obseiTed sprawlmg on 
the bottom, the tiny E. exigua. A careful examina- 
tion of the zoophyte revealed tlu'ee or four more of 
E. despecta, adhering by the slender foot to the 
ziofzaof stems, so firmlv that I could scarcely dislods^e 
them. Near the base of the frond-stalk I detected a 
specimen of the beautiful Doto coronata, a curious 
creature, with the dorsal tentacles springing from the 
midst of trumpet-like sheaths, like a stout pistil out 
of the midst of a flower, and with large branchiae all 
budding out with prominent knobs. It is indeed a 
pretty little creature, studded all over with pui'ple 
specks upon a pale bufi", pellucid ground. I observe 
that both this species and Eolis despecta have the 
power of elongating and contracting the branchial 
processes at will ; so that these are sometimes fully 
twice as long as they were the moment before, and as 
they appear perhaps the moment after. This is a pecu- 
liarity that I have not seen noticed. One of the E. des- 
pecta deposited from its side, while in the trough under 
examination, a minute globule of jelly containing a 
small quantity of spawn; and as there were visible in the 
pellucid body several more detached white masses of 
similar appearance, I conclude that this Mollusk de 
posits its ova not all at once but in successive portions 
as matured ; each mass, however, being always en- 
closed in its own envelope of jelly. Perhaps, indeed, 
this is the habit of all the nudibranchs ; for the spe- 
cimens of Boris hilamellata that I have kept have 
commenced to deposit a second ribbon of spawn a 
day or so after completing the first. 

Doto coronata, like the Dorides, occasionally 


crawls completely out of the water, a habit which I 
have not observed in the EoUdes. 


The elegant zoophyte itself, on which the Mollusca 
just described were living, was eminently worthy of 
admiration. I mean the Laomedea geniculata. I 
have called it a forest^ for the slender zigzag stems 
shoot up in crowded rows like trees in a wood, from 
a creeping root that meanders over the sea-weed, 
every angle of the stem beai'ing a glassy cell inhabited 
by a many-tentacled polype. 

The frond had not been in my possession many 
hours before I observed, on holding up to the light 
the phial in which I had placed it, one of those deli- 
cate little medusa-like objects that Mr. Peach and 
others have described, dancing through the water. 
Presently another appeared, and then another, and in 
the course of an hour or two, there must have been 
scores of them, playing about in the most entertaining 
manner. The naked eye readily detects them, and can 
even distinguish their form, which is that of a circular 
disk, or rather a shallow vase with a foot, and fringed 
all round the edge with slender threads about as long 
as the diameter of the disk. (Plate IV. fig. 4.) The 
little creatures are very active and sprightly, making 
their way rapidly through the water, by a sort of flap- 
ping motion of all the marginal threads together ; an 
action which, when viewed in profile, could not fail to 
remind the observer of the flight of a flagging- winged 
bird ; but so exquisitely delicate is the tiny creature, 

riale JV 



SO transparent, so shadowy, that a friend to whom I 
shewed it aptly called it the soul of the zoophyte. 
There is something in it also that reminds me of the 
pappus of a dandelion floating on the hreeze. 

Immense numhers of these tiny sylph-like creatures 
were successively produced from the Laomedea in the 
glass jar, so that the ivater at length seemed quite 
alive with them ; but I could not find that a single 
individual either became stationary, or changed its 
form, or grew. In the course of a day or two they all 

I will now describe one of them more in detail. 
Under the microscope it is seen to be a pellucid 
colourless disk or umbrella of considerable thickness, 
about rrth of an inch in diameter in its averas^e state 

60 O 

of expansion. Its substance has a reticular appear- 
ance, probably indicating its cellular texture. Inter- 
nally, the disk rises to a blunt point in the centre, 
whence four vessels diverge to opposite points of the 
margin. These form elevated ribs, the surface being 
gradually depressed from each to the centre of the 
interspace. (See fig. 1.) Externally* the centre of 
the disk is produced into a fleshy foot, having a 
narrow neck, and then expanding into a sort of 
secondary disk, of a square form with the angles 
rounded. (See figs. 1 and C.) This organ appears to 
be muscular, or at least it is capable of varied precise 
and energetic motions. The angles, which correspond 
in their direction to the four internal ridges, are very 

*I use the terms "internally" and "externally" only with reference 
to the appearance of the emhryo : this process is the representative of 
the peduncle of a Medusa, which is within the concavity of the umbrella. 


protrusile, and when the little animal is active are 
continually being thrust out in various directions, 
sometimes everted, but more commonly made to 
approach each other in different degrees ; sometimes 
one being bent in towards the centre, sometimes 
all closing up around a hollow interior. These four 
lobes, thus perpetually in motion, and changing, 
within certain limits, their form and their relation to 
each other, remind one of the lips or the tongues of 
more highly organised animals. The substance of 
this foot appears to be delicately granular ; but there 
is a very manifest tendency to a fibrous character in 
its texture, the fibres being directed from the exterior 
towards the interior, supposing the lobes to have their 
points in contact. 

Let us now look at the margin of the disk. Here 
are attached twenty-four slender tentacles, six in each 
quadrant formed by the divergent ribs ; but in some 
specimens I could not count more than twenty-three. 
Each tentacle springs from a thickened bulb, which is 
imbedded in the margin of the disk : it is evidently 
tubular, but the tube is not wider in the bulb than in 
the filament. The general surface is rough Avith pro- 
jecting points, which in some assume a veiy regular 
muricate appearance (as shown at 7), and the tentacle 
terminates in a blunt point. The discal part of the 
bulb is fringed with a row of minute bead-like glands. 
Around the edge of the circumference of the disk, on 
the exterior, are arranged eight beautiful organs, 
which are doubtless the seats of a special sense. 
They are placed in pairs, each pair being approximate, 
and appropriated to each of the quadratures of the 


circle : tliey do not appear to be organically connected 
wdth the tentacles. Each of these organs consists of 
a transparent globe, not enveloped in the substance 
of the disk, but so free, as to appear barely in contact 
with it (see fig. 2) : it contains a smaller globule or 
lens, of high refractive power, placed excentrically 
towards the outer side.- The inexperienced naturalist 
on first seeing these organs would unhesitatingly 
pronounce them eyes. They are, however, considered 
as rudimentarv oro^ans of hearino- • the crvstalline 
globule or otolithe being capable of vibration within 
its vesicle. Their exact counterparts are found in 
most of the small Medusae., a tribe of animals, which 
this tiny zoophytic embryo represents in its whole 
form and structure. 

The disk is endowed with an energetic power of 
contraction, by which the margin is diminished, 
exactly like that of a Medusa in swimming ; and the 
tentacles have also the power of individual motion, 
though in general this is languid, their rapid flapping 
being the eff"ect of the contraction and expansion of 
the disk just mentioned, producing a quick involution 
and evolution of the margin, and carrying the tentacles 
with it. Occasionally, however, all the tentacles are 
strongly brought together at their tips, as at fig. 5, with 
a twitching grasping action, like that of fingers, which 
is certainly independent of the disk, and may be con- 
nected with the capture of prey. 

Several months afterwards, having obtained some 
populous colonies of this species attached to al^a-, I 
selected some, to examine afresh their embryology. 
Some of the stalks were crowded with vesicles, which 


2)rojected in regular succession in one plane, forming 
a right angle to the distichous arrangement of the 
cells. The vesicle contains as many as ten or more 
develoj)ing medusoid embryos, (or rather chorions, 
each containing several embryos) included within the 
nutrient membranous tube, which they swell out into 
ovate sacs. The basal part of this tube, containing 
no embryos, is recognisable, but so tensely does it en- 
velope themedusoids in the greatest part of its length, 
that one would be ready to conclude these were free in 
the cavity of the vesicle. The nutrient granules are 
seen to circulate through the base of the tube, in some 
specimens their course being from the medullary core 
of the stalk into the vesicle, in others vice versa. 

I was so fortunate as to see the escape of one of 
the medusoid embryos. The terminal swelling was 
larger than the others, and seeing what I fancied to be 
the tentacles of the medusoid projecting from the 
mouth of the vesicle, I watched it. (See fig. 8.) 
These w^ere, however, extraneous particles of matter, 
but it so happened that presently the real tentacles 
began to protrude, all in a loose bundle, bent and 
irregularly contracted, just as the polype protrudes 
from the cell. It emerged rather leisurely, and when 
at length it was free, I was surprised to see that the 
globose sac, which I had supposed to be the escaping 
medusoid, was scarcely diminished, that in fact it 
contained others, tioo more I should think at least, 
from a comparison of its bulk with that of the libe- 
rated embryo, — and that, therefore, to judge from 
analogy, each of the swollen sacs in the ovigerous tube 
of the vesicle contains not one, but several developing 


medusoids. And this explains the very great abun- 
dance of the httle airy creatures that presently swarm 
in the vessel in which we have put only a limited 
colony of the zoophytes. 

As the embryo was slowly emerging from the nar- 
row neck of the vesicle, I could see the fluids run 
into those parts of the tentacles that were extruded, 
carrying minute clear granules into them. 

The medusoid w^hen liberated seemed feeble, its ten- 
tacles corrugated and shortened; it slowly fell through 
the water, making now and then a w^eak contraction, 
but it gathered strength in a few seconds, the tentacles 
lengthened, and the motions acquired the vigour and 
sprightliness that characterize this interesting form. 

Again I have been utterly unable to preserve the 
fi'agile medusoids for more than a few hours, though 
with every precaution to maintain the oxygenation of 
the water by living algce. They soon sink to the 
bottom, when the tentacles become indistinct, the 
whole outline becomes obsolescent, and shortly a mere 
mass of granules is all that remains. Has it ever 
been proved that these continue the race ? Are they 
male polypes ? 

The Laomedea genicnlata does not always grow in 
the close forest-like masses above described. I found 
in May a frond of Laminaria digitata, just ready to 
throw off the old lamina of last season. On the smooth 
olive expansion of this old frond the gemmule of a 
Laomedea had rested after its brief gyrations ; from 
it a glassy thread of extreme tenuity had crept along 
for a length of about seven inches, adhering so 
firmly to its support as not to be removed without 


tearing. The filament had proceeded for about three 
inches in a line but slightly curved, it had then made 
a right angle for about an inch, then another, and 
another, so as to inclose a square area, across which a 
branch joining the two sides had been sent forth, 
dividing the area equally. From this creeping thread, 
as a root or base, there had shot perpendicularly 
upward into the free water, the zigzag stalks which 
bore the cells with their indwelling polypes, arranged 
very evenly at intervals of about one-sixth of an inch, 
and standing about half-an-inch high. There were about 
forty stalks in all, each carrying from fourteen to 
twenty polype-cells, so that this colony may have 
included 7 or 800 individuals. The appearance of 
the regular stalks, growing along the line, as the 
frond gently waved beneath the transparent water, 
was very pretty and attractive. 


The very beautiful species of Actinia, which 
believing it new, I describe below,* — has the habit 
of A. bellis, protruding its beautiful rosy disk from 
holes in the sides of shallow pools. I find it rather 
numerous in the hollows of the worm-eaten limestone 
rock, that bounds Babbicombe to the north, the south 
face of the promontory known as Petit Tor, where also 

* Actinia rosea. Miiir. Body elongate, cylindrical, tentacula about 
120, arranged in four series, the innermost and next row containing ten 
each, the third about 20, and the fourth about 80. Oral disk ribbed 
divergently ; mouth 4-lobed, crenated. Tentacles rose-red ; disk olive. 
Body rich umber-brown, marked with numerous white sucking glands, 
not always visible. Inhabits holes in rocks. 


A. bellis is abundant. The position of these pools 
is several feet above low-water, but many species of 
interesting Alf/(B grow in them. The Actinice in 
question strike the eye at once by their brilliant con- 
trast with the rock, though they are not large ; none 
that I have seen exceeding an inch in diameter in 
widest expansion. Like A. hellis, they can be ob- 
tained only by means of the hammer and chisel ; 
for they retire into their holes on being annoyed, so 
that they cannot then be removed, nor even their ba- 
ses be touched. By chiselling away the rock, however, 
an operation of considerable difficulty under water, 
I detached several, which I brought home for exami- 
nation. The long white seminal filaments were dis- 
charged copiously by the larger ones, both from the 
detached base and from the mouth ; and these, as 
usual, were endowed with independent motion when 
liberated, by means of the delicate cilia with which 
they are covered. Some of the tentacles when disten- 
ded, as will presently be described, showed, in their 
pellucid interior, beautiful coils of these filaments. 

The body (Plate I. fig. 6.) when contracted is glo- 
bose, slightly wrinkled both transversely and longitu- 
dinally, and studded with white glands, not warty, to 
which minute gravel, &c. adheres. The ground co- 
lour is umber-brown, sometimes verging to reddish- 
brown. The disk, in the ordinary state of expansion, 
undistended, presents an exquisite marginal fringe of 
tentacles, (fig. 5.) of uniform rosy- red, the colour very 
pure and brilliant, the outmost rows perhaps showing 
a slight tendency to lilac. When these are just pro- 
truding from the opening animal, like a budding 


daisy, the appearance is also very attractive. The 
tentacles are all of the same size, about one fourth of 
the diameter of the fully expanded disk in length : 
they are arranged in four or five rows, not with per- 
fect regularity ; the innermost series when distended 
are apt to stand upright, while the others lie down, 
or hang over the edge. Although a considerable 
space exists between the inmost series and the mouth, 
each tentacle may be traced by an arched ridge run- 
ning from its base to the mouth ; the mouth is formed 
of four rounded lobes so as to make a cross, and the 
edge of each lobe is notched with many distinct and 
very regular white crenations, the terminations of the 
tentacular ridges. The disk thus formed is pale olive, 
somewhat silvered ; deeper brown around the bases of 
the tentacles, where this colour forms sinuous encir- 
cling lines. The ridges are marked throughout with 
close-set transverse wrinkles of extreme delicacy. 

The animal, like A. crassicorjiis, protrudes the 
peristoma in large corrugated pellucid lobes. It also 
distends the tentacles to a translucent condition ; in 
which state they are seen to be annulated with a. 
broad blackish band at their base, and with two re- 
mote pale narrow ones, at one and two thirds of their 
length. This appearance of the tentacles again re- 
minds us of crassicornis. 

May \2th. In one that has been in my possession 
about three weeks, I see several of the tentacles con- 
tain the white seminal filaments coiled up throughout 
their length, beautifully distinct through their pellu- 
cid substance. 

The tentacles on being cut off and flattened by the 


compressorium are seen to be covered with very 
minute but close-set and numerous hairs. The move- 
ment of extraneous particles indicates the presence of 
vibratile cilia also upon the surface. The cavity of 
the tentacle is large, the walls being proportionally 
thin. They contain, imbedded in their substance, 
but in no great numbers, the usual filiferous capsules, 
which are of the ordinary appearance in the Actinue, 
linear, slightly curved and minute, averaging about 
y^th inch in length. The projected thread too is 
short, being generally about six times as long as the 


I found this species,* April 20th, the same day as 
A. rosea, and in situations not very dissimilar. It was 
on the 7iorth side of the limestone promontory of Petit 
Tor, Avhere the rock forms those large somewhat 
cavernous pools already described, isolated only at 
very low tides, and dark with the shadow of the slimy 
sponge-covered precipitous rocks that overhang them ; 
and where Laminaria digitata grows and waves 
abundantly, and affords many a nidus for profuse 
forests of parasitical Corallines of the genera Sertu- 
laria, Plumularia and Laomedea. The little shining 
red orifices of thousands of Saxicava ruyosa hang 

* Actinia nivea, mihi. Body elongate, cylindrical, studded with suck- 
ing warts : tentacula about 120, in four series, sub-equal in size and 
length. Oral disk ribbed divergently ; mouth conical, a slit with 
slightly tumid lips. Body yellowish brown, becoming pale and nearly 
white towards the base ; disk and tentacles snowy white. Inhabits 
tubular holes in rocks beneath low-water mark. 


down from the holes which they have excavated in 
the solid limestone, each terminated by a shining 
diamond-drop of water, awaiting the moment when 
the returning tide shall cover their abodes, and restore 
to them activity and enjoyment. It is their season of 
periodical idleness and repose. Among the rough- 
nesses of the rock, and the conical papillary pores of 
tlie sponges, which, olive, yellow and scarlet, stud the 
surface, — green Nereidous worms glide along in and 
out, by means of the curious packets of slender 
bristles, alternately projecting from every segment 
and withdrawn, that serve them instead of feet. Below 
the water line, that is to say, the level of the lowest 
part of the margin of the pool, which of course never 
varies, such animals and plants as require to be per- 
petually covered with water enjoy circumstances 
suited to their wants. In the deepest shadow fine 
specimens of the fleshy Dulse flrid(ea edulisj and 
the lovely leaf- like Delesseria sanyuinea display their 
crimson fronds in copious tufts, plauts that cannot 
bear the absence of water, their delicate leaves be- 
coming orange-coloured in large patches, which soon 
die and slough away, — if left unbathed even for a 
single tide. The curious white Cows' paps, all stud- 
ded with their clear glassy polypes, project from the 
rock, and here I saw several white Actinice, which at 
once attracted my notice, though beyond my reach, 
on the opposite side of the pool. At length, however, 
by searching in another smaller pool, to which I 
could gain access, I found, beneath the drooping Oar- 
weeds, one of the white Actinim within reach. It was 
three or four inches beneath the surface, so that to 


procure it, it was needful to bale out the water to that 
depth, which I eflfected by the aid of one of my collect- 
ing jars, and then to cut out the animal's cell with the 
steel chisel. I was however sufficiently repaid for 
the labour by the beauty of this snow-white Anemone. 

It does not appear to exceed f inch in diameter 
when expanded; when contracted it is about the same 
in height, and about J inch in thickness ; though by 
more forcible contraction it becomes more globose. 
In this state it is wrinkled both transversely and 
longitudinally ; its colour is yellowish-brown, gradu- 
ally merging into white on the basal half; the 
porous suckers are also white, and are rather large, 
and papillary. (See Plate I. fig. 8.) The number, 
arrangement, and character, of the tentacles closely 
agree with those of A. rosea, and, as in that and other 
species, they are continued across the disk in lines 
converging to the mouth. They do not appear how- 
ever to be capable of distension, so as to become 
diaphanous. The mouth forms a sort of conical tu- 
bercle in the centre of the disk, the lips of which are 
only slightly tumid, not protruded in lobes. The lips 
do not appear to be crenated. The tentacles 
and disk are opaque white, beautifully distinct, 
without any markings, except that, when fully ex- 
panded, a grey tinge spreads in a circle around the 
disk, at the bases of the tentacles ; produced by the 
degree of pellucidity of which the integment is capa- 
ble, when filled with water. 

When much alarmed, as when we attempt to remove 
it from its place of attachment, it discharges the con- 
torted seminal filaments in unusual copiousness from 


the pores on the outside of the body, as well as from 
the mouth. These are slender, and of the purest white. 
The animal sometimes shows slight traces of longi- 
tudinal bands of pellucid white, alternating with the 

(P. S.) I have since taken it in May at extreme low 
water, on the rocks at Wildersmouth, Ilfracombe ; 
attached to a frond of Delesseria. 


In the coves around Mary church I have found 
attached to stones, generally on the under side, near 
very low^ water mark, a smallish Actinia, which I take 
to be the A. anyuicoma of Mr. Price. It is by no 
means common, however. The largest specimen I 
have seen was obtained at Anstey's Cove in April, 
beneath the shadow of the high rocks that form its 
southern boundary, below the slab of slate that some 
one has laid as a seat for those who will venture along 
the narrow giddy ledge on the precipitous face of the 
rock. This individual, in contraction (See Plate I, fig. 
10), has abase of about an inch in diameter, and forms a 
hemispherical wart of \ inch in height, much narrower 
than its base. When expanded its height and thick- 
ness are subject to great variation. Mr. Price speaks 
of its stretching itself to a length of 5 J inches ; I 
have never seen my specimens attain nearly that 
height, but do not in the least doubt the fact, from 
the tendency which I perceive the animal has to 
elongate itself in the dark, at the expense of its thick- 
ness, to become, as a gardener would say of a flower 


if in like manner deprived of light, drawn. I think 
two inches may be the limit of length to which I 
have seen mine extend. 

The body is of a delicate buff hue, elegantly pen- 
cilled wdth fine iiTegular lines of dark brow^n, running 
in longitudinal bands, which diverge from the disk. 
As these bands approach the base they become more 
defined, and the contrast between the dark rich brown 
and the buff is beautifully distinct, especially as the 
alternating light and dark bands are about equal in 
diameter, and pretty regular. A few blackish-brown 
specks are scattered around the body near the edge 
of the disk. 

The oral disk is rather wide, and prettily mottled 
and speckled with pale and dark brown, and white 
(fig. 2). On examination this effect is seen to be pro- 
duced by the converging ribs w^hich reach from the 
individual tentacles to the mouth, and which are 
common to the genus. These run in sub-parallel, 
but irregularly undulating lines ; they are raised in 
the middle, with a depression between them, and are 
delicately striated transversely. Each rib has a dark 
brown spot on each side, at the very base of the ten- 
tacle, it is then pale brown for about half-way to the 
mouth, when it becomes blackish, then white, then 
blackish again, and finally pale as it is lost in the 
oral aperture. The narrow lines that separate the 
ribs are whitish, and the different distances from the 
centre at w^hich the black and white spots occur in the 
alternate tentacle-ribs, (those of the inner rows crush- 
ing out, as it were, the others) give the pretty speckled 
appearance, which is I think characteristic. From 


the two ends of the mouth, which is an oblong aper- 
ture, contracting to a slit, there are two more con- 
spicuous white dashes each extending towards the 
nearest tentacle. 

The tentacles are very long, slender, taper and 
flexible. They form about five alternating rows, of 
which the outmost are shorter and more numerous. 
They appear to me to be numbered as follows: — 12. 
12. 24. 48. 96=192: of course approximately. They 
are of the most delicate pellucid white, marked with 
two or three annular bands of positive white, but very 
evanescently ; these are, however, more perceptible 
in young than in adult specimens. Each tentacle 
is striated with a narrow line of dark brown, which 
runs along each side throughout its length. This 
line is readily identified, and appears quite character- 
istic of the species. 

When looked at through a glass, to the side of 
which the base is adherent, the transparency of the 
substance permits with peculiar facility the internal 
structure to be seen. The converging laminae are 
very distinct, arranged in pairs, about twelve of which 
extend from the circumference to the centre, about as 
many intermediate pairs are lost before they reach 
the centre, and other pairs respectively occupying the 
interspaces, can be traced only a short distance from 
the circumference. The appearance is well suited to 
give a vivid impression of the analogy in structure 
between an Actinia and a Madrepore. Let these 
membranous plates only have a deposit of lime upon 
them, and they become the skeleton of a coral. 
Within the spaces inclosed by the laminse, I could 


see the seminal filaments copiously lying, coiled up 
in contorted masses. 

The species is well-named; for its long intertwining 
slender tentacles give the animal somewhat of a 
snaky-haired aspect, a sort of Medusa's head appear- 
ance ; — at least as far as such a symbol can agree 
with beauty, for delicately beautiful our Actinia cer- 
tainly is. It seems to expand more readily than 
many species, almost always being in full blossom 
when covered with water, and if alarmed to closing, 
soon recovering its placid confidence, and opening 
again. The transparency of its tentacles can scarcely 
be represented by painting, at least not w^ithout 
greatly enlarging the scale. 

I took a specimen at Watermouth, near Ilfracombe, 
in May ; in similar circumstances to the former ones. 

Young specimens have the colours much paler and 
more pellucid ; the delicate buff of the longitudinal 
bands being almost white. 

Filiferous capsules are abundant in the w^alls of 
the tentacles : they are linear, slightly curved, and 
minute, being about j^Q^h. inch in length. I could 
not see the discharged thread with a power of 300 


Here end my littoral researches in South Devon. 
My residence there was not attended with that 
improvement in health, that had been looked for, 
and I determined to try the more bracing climate of 
the northern coast. At the end of April, before yet 
the pertinacious easterly winds that characterised the 
spring of 1852 had ceased, when all nature seemed 
scarcelv more advanced than I had seen it three 
months before, I bade adieu to Marychurch. I left 
behind unexplored much well worth visiting; many 
of the beautiful coves and rocks in the vicinity I had 
not even seen ; my infirm health, and the frequent pre- 
valence of a heavy surf upon the shore, caused by the 
undeviating wind setting full on the coast, prevented 
my making so full use of a three months' littoral 
residence as I could have wished. 


Ilfracombe— Beautiful Scenery— Walk to "SYatennoutli— Hele — 
Hockey Lane — Fine Sea-view — Daws — Doves — Charms of 
Spring — Watermouth — Curious mode of Fishing — Grove of 
Flowers — Rabbits — Sharp Rocks — Gemmaceous Anemone — 
Living Madrepores — Their Localities — Appearance — Mode of 
detaching them — Their Structure — The Plates — Beauty of 
the Animal — Protrusion of the soft Parts — Their Translu- 
cency — Analogy with the Anemone — Brilliancy of Colours- 
Tentacles — Cilia on their Surface — The globose Heads — The 
Tentacles are tubular — Lnprisoned Animalcule — Sensibility 
of the Madrepore to Light — Experiments in feeding them — 
Sense of Taste — Reproduction of Parts— The Frilled Bands 
—Their Use— Their Structure— Thread-Capsules— Singular 
Forms of these Organs — The Madrepore easily preserved 


May 1st. We are come to sojourn in this charm- 
ing place, the scenery of which is most beautiful. 
My study looks out upon the Public Baths, and one 
or two pretty villas, with the fields of the Kunna- 
cleaves behind them most richly green, sloping up- 
wards to the edge of the cliffs that border the sea. 
The sheep, peacefully lying or grazing, speckle with 
white these verdant slopes: and young ladies come 


out there in the afternoon from one of the houses, 
with their targets and bows, to practise archery. Cap- 
stone Hill with its flag- crowned summit and its hold 
precipitous face, round which a scarped promenade 
winds, rears itself on the right, between which and 
the slopes is a pretty little peep of the Channel, and in 
clear weather of the Welsh Coast beyond ; the blue 
water lying as it were in a cup, and momentarily 
relieved by the ships and small craft that pass to and 
fro, whose white sails are seen for a brief space as 
they emerge from behind the Capstone and glide 
across the opening. 

Behind the house we step out from our sitting- 
room window upon a little garden of grass, bounded 
not by hedge nor walls, but by steep even banks, so 
that the little inclosure is a sort of grassy basin. 
The turf was at first gay with daisies and dandelions, 
and the ripe seeds of the latter presented a tempta- 
tion to Goldfinches, which came in little flocks, with 
Chaffinches and Yellow Ammers, to twitter and feed 
in unsuspecting confidence immediately before the 
window. But the mower has just been here, who has 
no mercy on dandelions or daisies ; and now there is 
only the smooth- shaven turf and the flower-beds that 
are cut out of it. It looks cleaner and brighter for 
the change to be sure, but the Goldfinches will come 
no more to it. Other gardens lie beyond ours, and 
then the upper part of the town, with the fine old 
church, and the whole view bounded by an ample 
amphitheatre of sloping fields and high downs 
crowned with golden-blossomed furze. It is indeed 
a lovely view, especially in the morning sun ; and to 


US just come to it, it seems as if we could not be pro- 
fuse enough in admiration.* 


Mr. Ealfs, who has furnished some valuable zoolo- 
gical and botanical lists to the North Devon Guide, 
gives Watermouth and Smallmouth as localities for 
Caryophyllia Smithii. To search foJthjs interesting 
coral then was the object of my first excursion. Cir- 
cumstances were favourable : it was spring-tide, and 
the time of low-water was about eleven in the fore- 
noon : there was no sea running, for the winds had 
lately been light ; it was delightful weather, and as I 
passed along the edge of the cliffs that border the sea 
beyond Hillsborough, the long line of coast to the 
north of the Channel, and Lundy Island in the offing, 
that have been for several days barely visible, stood 
out in bold distinctness, darkly blue. The lofty emi- 
nence of these cliffs allowed me to see even the low 
line of land that stretches away beyond the promon- 
tory known as Worms Head, and that forms the back 
of Caermarthen Bay on towards Tenby. 

The opening of Spring is always pleasant, but to 
a naturalist it is like the opening of the gates of 
Eden : and now its charm was enhanced by delay 


I hope I shall be excused for giving a grateful testimony to the way 
in which our comfort was studied while in the lodging house of Mrs. 
Williams of Northfield, Ilfracombe. We remained here the whole time 
of our residence in the place, six months ; and during this period the 
unvarying cheerfulness and kindliness, the utter disregard of self, and 
the entire devotedness to our wishes, manifested by the inmates, were 
such as one rarely finds, except from the warmest friends. 


through the long continuance of dreary east winds. 
Every thing was lovely, the young fresh verdure of 
the hedges, the leafing trees, the sun, the sea, the 
birds, the butterflies, the flowers, — all contributed to 
make this morning more than usually delightful. 

Leaving behind me the pretty little village of Hele, 
with its neat houses and cottages, its trim gardens 
sloping up the steep side of old Hillsborough, and its 
hedges covered with white garments put out by the 
laundresses for the benefit of this brilliant sun, — I pass 
over a brook by a rustic one-arched bridge, and wind 
up Hockey Lane to the lofty downs. The lane, barely 
wide enough for a wheelbarrow, has been scarped out 
of the soft slaty rock ; but the ruggedness of its sides 
is concealed by a profusion of verdure. On the left 
or seaward bank, all starred with primroses, dog- 
violets, and daisies, is a hedge of thorn, just now out 
in its primal greenness. The right side is more per- 
pendicular, and is for the greater part of its length 
densely tapestried with ivy, and crowned with bramble 
and elder bushes. On both sides the cheerful pilewort 
is abundant, and the spotted arum, now in flower ; and 
ferns are abundant too, the common Pteris or brake, 
and the Hart's tongue, especially the latter, whose 
young yellow-green fronds stand up thickly with their 
curled points, among the torn and black-stained fronds 
of last year. 

On the edge of the down at the top of this lane is a 
limekiln for the burning of the blue limestone which 
is so rare on this side of the county, but a little vein 
of which occurs just here in the almost universal 
grauwacke. Here I stood awhile to look out upon 


the beautiful Bristol Channel, with its white-sailed 
craft beating up against the faint easterly breeze, and 
to gaze down on the romantic coves and rocks about 
Killage point; the ridges of slaty rock running out 
edgewise into the sea, the oarweeds and/iici laid bare 
about their bases by the recess of the tide, and the 
beaches between of smooth grey sand, still wet with 
the recent water. Jackdaws, recognized by their grey 
polls, were shooting out from the clefts of the preci- 
pices, and hovering round with shrill cawings, pre- 
sently returning to the crevices which doubtless 
contained the callow objects of their parental solici- 

Fair is the dark [blue] deep ; by night and day 
Unvex'd with storms, the peaceful billows play ; 

The firmament above is bright and clear ; 
The sea-fowl, lords of water, air, and land, 

Joyous alike upon the wing appear. 
Or when they ride the waves, or walk the sand ; 

Beauty and light and joy are everywhere. 

ELehama, XV. 13. 

Farther on, a pair of Eock Doves, alarmed probably 
at the sound of my footsteps, darted forth from the 
ivy-mantled cliff, just beneath me, and flew away on 
rapid wing side by side. They too probably had the 
" home where'er the heart is", in some rugged nook in 
these inaccessible heights. I was now above Water- 
mouth, the outlet of a little stream, which at low water 
(as now) winds along a channel through a muddy 
creek to the sea ; but which at high tide is lost at the 
head of the inlet, which is then filled by the sea. It is 
a very romantic creek, being walled in as it were by 


high precipitous rocks, especially at the very mouth, 
one side of which is formed by a conical hill, gay with 
blooming furze, which is known as Saxon's burrow. 
Across the inlet, at some distance within its mouth I 
observed a row of stout poles erected, about twenty- 
five feet high, from each of which a rope extended to 
the head-line of a net that lay along at the foot, and 
a chain-hawser was affixed to a stouter post at some 
distance up the creek. A number of men were busy 
about the net, and some of them were dragging a light 
cart towards the shore, with a net formed like a 
shrimper's net, but much larger. A hind who was 
passing on the road told me that the net is set at high 
water by men who go thither in a boat, raised doubt- 
less by the lines which I saw at the top of the poles. 
It remains during the spring tides, but at neap tides 
it is taken in. Grey Mullet are the chief fish taken, 
which are found in the pools of the mud after the 
recess of the tide ; two hundred-weight, he assured 
me, were taken at one tide, about six months ago, 
when the net was first set. The fishery belongs to 
Arthur Bassett, Esq., the proprietor of the estate, 
whose mansion, a castellated structure of grey stone, 
overlooks the inlet, and has a rather imposing appear- 

The foot-path above the inlet passes through a 
small grove, the more pleasing as timber is not a 
common feature in the landscape hereabouts. The 
russet hue of the budding oaks contrasted with the 
different shades of green displayed by the expanded 
foliage of the sycamores and thorns; and the sloping 
turf beneath was covered with clumps of primroses 


and spotted with glossy pileworts, those uhiquitous 
flowers, mingled with frequent spikes of the graceful 
wild hyacinths, and now and then one of the more 
beautiful purple orchis. The pilewort, or celcmdine, as 
some call it, is one of my favourites ; for I must cer- 
tainly beg to be admitted among the " three or four" 
whom Wordsworth covets to praise his little flower of 
the '* glittering countenance." Blackbirds were pour- 
ing forth their rich mellow notes from some of the 
trees ; and from the summit of a furze-crowned hill 
opposite came the welcome call of the Cuckoo, the 
more welcome because it was the first time I had 
heard it for the season ; and Cuckoos' notes had been 
of late years somewhat of a rarity to me. 

Below the house, I crossed a small bridge over the 
brook, and climbed the steep face of the down, — where 
wheatears were flitting to and fro, and goldfinches 
were rifling the seed-heads of the dandelions, and 
humble-bees were probing the dead-nettles, — to the 
edge. This is margined with furze, a cover for nu- 
merous rabbits, whose infant progeny ran out and in 
before me in surprise and affright at the intrusion. 
Here I saw before me the sea-washed rocks again, 
and though the little cove at my feet was neither 
Watermouth nor Smallmouth, I resolved to try it, as 
I presumed that a zoophyte common to those locali- 
ties might be found at an intermediate station. 

On scrambling down to the water's edge, an ope- 
ration much more difficult and dangerous than on the 
South Devon Coast, owing to the rock here universally 
being grmiwache, a grey, friable slate, which stands 
up in sharp, almost perpendicular, ridges, — the first 


tiling that caught my attention was an Actinia, which 
I at once saw was new to me. It was projecting ex- 
panded from a crevice in the rock, just helow the 
surface, in a little pool. A few minutes' labour en- 
abled me to open a passage for the draining of the 
water, so far as to expose my Anemone, which I then 
soon dug out of his retreat by means of the chisel 
and hammer. On examination at home it proved to 
be Act. gemmacea, a fine species apparently rare, 
since Dr. Johnston seems not to be personally ac- 
quainted with it. He gives only Gaertner's specific 
character and locality, and old Ellis's description, and 
for his figures he is indebted to Mr. Cocks. Mr. Kalfs, 
however, had given in the Guide to North Devon 
this very locality for the species, and I afterwards 
found it not uncommon on this coast. 

I searched some time without success for the Coral, 
and had begun to despair of finding it, for the tide 
was almost at its lowest; when sudddenly I caught 
sight of one projecting from the under surface of one 
of the slanting ridges of rock. The water would not 
allow me to reach it with any hope of detaching it 
uninjured, but presently I peeped into a small cavern 
formed by large masses of the rock piled one against 
another, in which there were nearly a score of them. 
By a little manoeuvring I managed to squeeze my 
body between the stones, so as to work with the chisel, 
disregai'dful of the water that covered my feet below, 
and of the coating of mud, the slimy zoophytes, and 
sponges, that adhered to the overhanging rock above 
me. The Corals varied in size, from that of a pea to 
f of an inch in height and diameter. They were not 


at all clustered, but scattered at irregular distances. I 
obser\^ed them to be affixed to perpendicular and over- 
hanging surfaces, but in no case on a diagonal or a 
horizontal one with an upward aspect, not even in 
the remotest part of the cavern. All that I saw were 
left exposed by the receding tide, though in any but a 
spring-tide they would all have been constantly cover- 
ed. I afterwards found a few more on the sides of 
pools in the rocky ridges, several feet above low-water 

In general the terminal half shewed only the 
white radiating plates of stone, within which the animal 
was so completely drawn that the eye could not detect 
the delicate membrane which enveloped them. From 
some of the largest, however, particularly those which 
were affixed to overhanging surfaces, there depended a 
shapeless mass of transparent jelly, extending in some 
cases to 1 J inch. This, however, was speedily retract- 
ed when the Coral was rudely touched. I procured a 
dozen specimens, for the friable slate was easy to 
dislodge ; but in many cases the Coral itself was 
detached from its base during the process ; and of 
some I found that I could detach them, and even break 
to pieces the texture of stony plates, wdth my fingers. 
I brought home and put in sea- water all that I obtain- 
ed but those only which remained attached to a piece 
of rock expanded their tentacles Those which had 
been broken from their bases contented themselves 
with protruding the tips of these organs around the 
oral disk. 

But after some weeks those whose bases had been 
detached opened as freely as those which had the 


pieces of rock, and all displayed their beautiful struc- 
ture without any reserve. 

Just eight weeks have now elapsed since I took the 
specimens above-mentioned ; and I have added two 
more which I found at Hele, adhering to the perpen- 
dicular side of a narrow, but deep rock-basin. They 
are all alive and in excellent condition, with the ex- 
ception of one or two that I selected to experiment 
on. I shall proceed to describe these interesting and 
beautiful pets. 

Doubtless you are familiar with the stony skeleton 
of our Madrepore, as it appears in museums. It con- 
sists of a number of thin calcareous plates standing 
up edgewise, and arranged in a radiating manner 
around a hollow centre. The upper edges of these 
plates are rounded in their outline, and are free, that 
is, not in contact with each other ; but a little below 
the outer margin, their individuality is lost by the 
deposition of rough calcareous matter, mingled and 
overlaid with dirty floccose extraneous substances ; so 
that only the general form is discernible on the out- 
side, except at the very summit. This general form 
is more or less cylindrical, commonly however a little, 
and sometimes considerably wider at the top than just 
above the bottom. The base itself is a flat expansion, 
or rather a low cone, of which the breadth varies 
greatly in different specimens. 

The plates are not all of the same size. There are 
commonly about fifteen principal ones, which are 
higher than the rest, and project more into the cen- 
tral cavity. Between each of these and the next, are 


normally three small plates, of wliicli tlie middle one 
is a little larger than the others. This regularity, 
however, of arrangement is not always perfectly 
maintained. All the plates, though very thin and 
delicate, are roughened on hoth surfaces with minute 
tuberculous knobs, set in rows in quincuncial order 
(See Plate V., fig. 5), which near the edges run into 
one another, and make small ridges. In looking at 
this structure I was reminded of the spicul-ae of Alcy- 
oniuin, &c., which are roughened with similar knobs ; 
and though the latter are only minute atoms imbed- 
ded in the flesh, they are doubtless the rudimentary 
representatives of these stony plates. 

The interior edges of the plates form a deep cup, 
at the bottom of which they meet. The central one 
of the three intermediate plates, or what has been 
called the second cycle, sends off another plate into 
the hollow of the cup, which is similar in form to 
those of the circumference, but much smaller, the top 
not rising to nearly their level. The centre of the 
cup is occupied by a series of slender frilled and 
irregularly twisted plates, forming a spongy mass, the 
top of which is still lower than the level of the sub- 
ordinate circle of plates. 

This is but the skeleton ; and though it is a very 
pretty object, those who are acquainted with it alone, 
can form from it a very poor idea of the beauty ot 
the living animal. When we take it from its attach- 
ment and remove it from its native element, the 
violence causes it to contract so forcibly, that you 
would see nothing but what I have described, and 
would scarcely perceive any difference between it and 


the dry skeleton. Nor would any alteration be pre- 
sently manifest on again putting it into sea-water. 
But let it recover its confidence, its equanimity ; then 
you will see a pellucid gelatinous flesh emerging from 
between the plates, little exqusitely formed and 
coloured tentacles fringing the sides of the cup- 
shaped cavity, across which stretches the oral disk 
marked with a star of some rich and brilliant colour, 
surrounding the central mouth, a slit with white 
crenated lips, like the orifice of one of those 
elegant cowry shells that we put upon our mantel- 

The animated part of the zoophyte will some- 
times rise to the height of an inch above the level of 
the plates, exclusive of the tentacles, which can be 
extended to almost half an inch more. Its resem- 
blance to an Actinia is then seen to be as great in 
appearance as in structure, though the diversity, in- 
dependent of the stony base, is sufficient to prevent 
your confounding one with the other. Like the Sea 
Anemone, our Madrepore has the power of filling its 
body and tentacles with water from without, a process 
which when carried to an extreme, as it often is, espe- 
cially when the animal is expecting food, or after it 
has received it, imparts to the tissues a charming 
translucency, a sort of filmy cloudiness to the eye, as 
if we were looking on the ghost of a zoophyte, instead 
of real solid substance. (See fig. 1.) 

How far down on the outside the gelatinous en- 
velope extends, whether indeed it surrounds the 
whole stony deposition, even passing between the 
base and the rock, close as the contact seems, I can- 

Ffatf Y 

fxaiiu id 

Fi-Ouul fyMuUmxmJfl A yTalton . 



not certainly say. It is not visible, at any time, 
much below the level at which the individuality of 
the plates is lost in the rough surface. You would 
suppose that it is pushed out from between the plates, 
but in reality, the plates are clothed with it, as the 
bones of a vertebrate animal are with muscles and 
skin. When the soft parts are withdrawn, the film of 
flesh that invests the plates is indeed extremely thin, 
so attenuated that it is not appreciable by the senses ; 
but, it is there, as you will perceive if you exactly 
watch the process of protrusion. I think I have 
before mentioned that the interior of an Actinia con- 
sists of a number of perpendicular veils of membrane, 
stretched from the skin to the centre, where thev all 
meet; and if you imagine that every one of these 
membranes is turned to stone, or, which is more 
correct, that stony particles are deposited in the inter- 
spaces of such veils, — you will understand the for- 
mation of the Madrepore's skeleton, and its relation 
to the soft investing flesh : a knowledge of the more 
importance, since the structure of all the vast variety 
of corals that swarm in the tropical seas will be 
understood at the same time. 

The colours of our native Madrepore vary con- 
siderably ; but they are always beautiful. The mouth 
is a transverse slit, the edges or lips of which are 
white, and minutely notched. The mouth is always 
more or less prominent, and it can be protruded and 
expanded to an astonishing extent. A space sur- 
rounding the lips is commonly fawn-colour or rich 
chestnut-brown ; then there is a star or vandyked 
circle of vivid colour, on which the beauty of the 


animal mainly depends. (See figs. 1 and 3.) Some- 
times it is a deeper chestnut, sometimes a fine rich red ; 
sometimes pale vermillion ; and not seldom the most 
brilliant emerald green, as brilliant as the gorget of a 
Humming-bird. The hue, whatever it be, is usually 
continued in a fainter tint around and among the 
bases of the tentacles, until it is lost in the fawn- 
colour or pale bay of the outer margin.* The ten- 
tacles are conical in shape, tapering from a broadish 
base almost to a point, but terminating in a little 
globular head. The head is generally white, rarely 
tipped with pink, nearly opaque ; but the body of the 
tentacle is transparent, and almost colourless, but 
studded all over with very minute opaque warts, 
close- set, and frequently arranged in irregular lines ; 
these are of a rich sienna-brown, varying in intensity, 
aud give a very peculiar character to the aspect of 
the animal. Indeed it is impossible to look at it 
through a lens, and that whether as a transparent 
object up against the light, or as an opaque one, with 
a dark background, without being charmed by the 
elegant form and pleasing effect of these little knob- 
bed organs, curling and waving here and there at the 
wayward will of the creature. (See Plate XXVI. 
fig. 4). 

It is not uncommon, however, to find specimens in 
which the colours are so very evanescent, that the 

*A singularly good representation of a highly-coloured specimen of 
our Madrepore may be obtained by cutting across a ripe strawberry of 
moderate size. The mouth with its painted margin, the Vandyke cir- 
cle of flesh-colour, and even the radiating white plates are all there 
with felicitous vraisemblance. 


whole animal appears white, a translucent white. This 
is a very lovely variety. Still, even in these, the hues 
I have mentioned above may in general be faintly 

I am not aware that any naturalist has recorded an 
interesting peculiarity, that I have observed in the 
tentacles. It is that their surface is delicately ciliated. 
I was examining one with a rather low power, when I 
thought I saw something like a current in the water 
over the tentacles. I immediately put on a power of 
140 diameters, wdiich was but just sufficient to show 
it distinctly ; I was precluded from the use of a higher 
power by the nature of the vessel in which the speci- 
mens were kept. However I unmistakeably saw 
minute atoms slowly moving in the water come into 
proximity to a tentacle, then immediately whirled 
along with rapidity in the direction of the j)oint ; the 
same thing was seen on both sides of the tentacle, and 
in fact all over its surface, the direction being in all 
cases the same, from the base towards the point. I 
tried manv tentacles, and two specimens of the Madre- 
pore, with precisely the same result. I saw a very 
minute atom, hurled along close to the surface, rise 
over the warts and descend into the hollows between 
them, so as to show that the cilia clothe both the 
warts and the plain surface of the tentacle. The 
globular tip, however, I think is destitute of them, for 
though the atoms were often hurled partly round this, 
I believe it was only by the impetus already acquired, 
for I could never see any motion either originated or 
undeniably continued there. The cilia themselves I 
could not detect by the most delicate manipulation. 


nor the marginal haze that generally indicates their 
presence ; still I am as certain of their existence by 
the results, as if I had seen them. They must evi- 
dently be very minute ; none but the smallest atoms 
obeyed the current ; larger ones continued their course 
or remained motionless. 

Under this power the globular head of the tentacle 
is seen to be clothed with a dense coat of very short 
hairs : the warts also of the body are rough, though 
not so definitely. The tubular nature of the tentacles 
was singularly illustrated in one instance. Within 
one of the tentacles was a small living animal, formed 
like an Annelide, but the imperfect transparency would 
not permit me to make out its characters with preci- 
sion : it swam vigorously, with a serpentine wriggling, 
and was forcibly driven, over and over, towards the 
narrow extremity of the cavity. I am almost sure, 
however, that more than its own spontaneous motion 
was in exercise : it seemed to be driven forward against 
its strenuous efforts, sometimes making a little way, 
then hurled along backward. If this was so, the 
inference is unavoidable, that there is a current over 
the interior surface of the tentacle as well as over the 
exterior, and in the same direction. I did not see, 
however, any evidence of a stream passing through 
the tip of the tentacle, and hence suppose that 
the internal waves spend themselves at the extre- 
mity of the cavity. A curious inquiry remains, — 
How did the little animal find its way into its living 
prison ? 

The tentacles are adhesive, but in a slighter degree 
than those of an Actinia of the same size : I did not 


find the least heat or stinging follow the contact, even 
with tender parts of the skin, as the backs of the 

Like the Actiniae the Carijoj)hylli(B appear to have 
a sense of the stimulus of light. They expand most 
during the night, or in the darkness of a closet ; and 
I have several times observed that one fully dilated 
in a dark cupboard would suddenly, on the door 
being opened, draw in some of the tentacles and 
perceptibly contract itself, though it might expand 
again a moment afterwards ; and this in a deep glass 
vessel, covered with six or eight inches of water, so 
that no vibration of the air could have been appreci- 
able. I have not however been able to detect any 
coloured tubercle at the angles of the mouth, nor any 
other organs which might be supposed to be analo- 
gous to eyes. 

The feeding of the Madrepores affords much amuse- 
ment ; they are very greedy, and the presence of food 
stimulates them to more active efforts, and the display 
of greater intelligence, than we should give them 
credit for. 

I put a minute spider, as large as a pin's head, 
into the water, pushing it down with a bit of grass to 
a Coral, which was lying with partially exposed tenta- 
cles. The instant the insect touched the tip of a 
tentacle it adhered, and was drawn in with the sur- 
rounding tentacles between the plates, near their 
inward margin. Watching the animal now with a 
lens, I saw the small mouth slowly open, and move 
over to that side, the lips gaping ud symmetrically ; 
while at the same time by a movement as impercepti- 


ble as that of the hour-hand of a watch, the tiny prey- 
was carried along between the plates towards the cor- 
ner of the mouth. The latter, however, moved most ; 
and at length reached the edges of the plates, and 
gradually took in and closed upon the insect : after 
which it slowly returned to its usual place in the cen- 
tre of the disk. 

After some quarter of an hour, observing that the 
tentacles were more fully expanded than before, and 
inferring that so tiny a morsel had only whetted the 
Coral's appetite, I caught a house fly in the window 
pane, and taking hold of its wings with a pair of pliers, 
plunged it under water. The tentacles held it at the 
first contact as before, and drew it down upon the 
mouth, which instantly began to gape in expectation. 
But the struggles of the fly's legs perhaps tickled the 
Coral's tentacles in an unwonted manner, for they 
shrank away, and presently released the intended 
victim, which rose to the surface like a cork ; only 
however to become the breakfast of an expectant 
Actinia hellis, which was much too wise to reject or 
to let slip so dainty a prey. The poor Coral evi- 
dently regretted the untoward necessity of letting 
it go, for his mouth, — I will not say tcatered, for 
being under water the expression might be open 
to criticism, but — gaped, for some time after the 

I more commonly, however, fed them with shell 
fish, such as limpets, perri winkles, &c., cutting these 
into pieces proportionate to the size of the Madrepore. 
In taking a large morsel, the mouth is produced out, 
and stretched over it, the unyielding stony margin of 


the stomachal cavity preventing it from being drawn 
in, as it would be in the case of an Actinia ; and 
hence when the food has disappeared, the lips having 
first embraced it on every side and then covered it, 
meeting in a little puckered knot in the centre, the 
whole oral disk projects perpendicularly, from amidst 
the tentacles like a thick pillar, through whose pellu- 
cid sides the contained food is seen as a dark nucleus. 
Maceration, however, soon softens the morsel, and it 
is not long before all the parts resume their ordinary 
proportions and relations ; the tentacles and the outer 
margin becoming distended with water, and rising to 
the level of the mouth, if the size of the food still 
prevents the latter from sinking to theirs. After a 
period, varying from five or six to twenty-four hours, 
the morsel is evacuated rather suddenly, very little 
changed, if it be solid, in form or appearance, and 
not invested with that glairy mucus, which covers the 
rejected remains of an Actinia's food. 

There appears to be the sense of taste, or some 
perception analogous to it, in these creatures, at least 
so far as to enable them to discriminate in their re- 
ception of food. I cut a large specimen of one of 
our most common rock shell-fish, Trochus cinerarius, 
into many pieces, distributing most of them among 
my dozen pet Madrepores. They began to take in 
their morsels with as prompt a voracity as usual, but 
every one, without an exception, rejected the food 
before it was half swallowed. The same pieces were 
taken and swallowed by Actinice hellis, gemmacea, and 
auyuicoma, and by Antliea cereiis, though not appa- 
rently with much gusto. The lean of cooked meat, 


and portions of earth worms were unobjectionable 
to all. 

Dicquemare lias recorded an experiment in which 
an Actinia, being cut across transversely, instead of 
healing up into a new basis, produced another mouth 
and tentacula, so that an animal was formed which 
caught its prey and fed at both ends at the same time. 
The same power of reproduction belongs to the 
Madrepore. One of the specimens which have been 
in my vases for the last five months has just exhibited 
to me a phenomenon exactly parallel. When it was 
dislodged from its original rock, the fragment of stone 
broke in such a manner, that only the very edge of 
the base of the Coral remained in junction, all the 
rest of the base (perhaps four-fifths) being exposed. 
The stone, however, that adhered thus slenderly was 
sufficient to keep the base of the Coral from contact 
with the bottom of the vessel in which it has been 
since kept; and I have just discovered (Sept. 27th), 
in casually taking it up, that a new disk, with mouth, 
tentacles, and a new array of radiating plates, has 
formed on what was originally the base. The proper 
disk has retained full vigour and beauty, so that here 
is a Madi'epore with a head at each extremity. The 
new disk is smaller in all its parts than the whole 
one, but is perfect in its symmetry, and its colours 
agree in their hues and distribution with those of the 
their extremity ; as indeed was to be expected, since 
it is not a new animal, but only a new growth of the 
old ; just as any accidental variation of tint in a 
flower, though liable to be lost when the race is 


reproduced by seed, -will be retained in new shoots 
and cuttings, which are integral parts of the indi- 
vidual plant. While I write these lines, the new 
mouth is swallowing a morsel of raw beef, stretching 
its expansile lips with the same deliberate skill as if 
it had had many years' practice, instead of this 
being the first occasion of its so hanselling its new 

I have another specimen in which about half the 
disk of calcareous plates had been broken away in 
the act of dislodging it. New plates were very soon 
formed to replace the lost ones, which, however, have 
not attained the height of the former, so that though, 
when looked at vertically, the radiating disk of plates 
appears perfect, when viewed side-wise, a deep step or 
shoulder is seen across the disk, the new half pre- 
senting a considerably lower level than the old. Yet 
when the soft parts are protruded, the distortion is not 
conspicuous, the disk only seeming somewhat oblique 
instead of horizontal. 

On breaking a living Coral in pieces we find among 
the plates a multitude of narrow membranous bands 
with thickened edges, frilled and puckered and con- 
voluted to a great degree, and of a pale salmon-red 
tint. These answer to the similar bands that I have 
before mentioned in the Actinim, and are considered to 
be the ovaries. If we watch them closely we shall 
see that they have a spontaneous motion, slowly 
twisting and twining over each other like so many 
worms ; and if we submit a small portion to micro- 
scopical examination we shall find it fringed with 
minute vibratile ciUa. 



But are these frilled bands ovaries ? A specimen 
that was broken longitudinally into two nearly equal 
portions, I was keeping in a glass cell for examination, 
hoping to see the commencement of the process of 
reproduction of the parts. Both the portions of the 
fractured animal appeared to be in good health, not- 
withstanding the accident, and were so placed in the 
glass (which had parallel sides) as to be highly con- 
venient for observation. I wished to see the process 
of feeding, now that only half a mouth was possessed 
by each ; and therefore presented to each a minute 
morsel of raw beef. The interior of the animal was 
opposite my eye, as I watched it with a lens. The 
lips slowly expanded and embraced the morsel exactly 
as usual, to the degree that their imperfect condition 
permitted, and when this was effected, I saw with 
surprise, that the salmon-coloured frills from the in- 
terior slowly reared themselves up one by one, and 
appressed their surfaces and extremities (which ap- 
peared somewhat dilated), to the sides of the morsel, 
embracing it closely on that side which (on account 
of the fracture) was open, but not confining them- 
selves to that side. These phenomena were the same 
in the other specimen, and were repeated in each, on 
subsequent occasions, whenever fed. 

My first inference was that these organs were per- 
forming a part analogous to the chyliferous system of 
higher animals, absorbing those juices from the food, 
which were destined to nourish the vitality of the 
Coral. But having detached a minute portion of one 
of the bands, I submitted it to an uniformly graduated 
pressure on the stage of the microscope, when I found 


tliat in its substance were imbedded a great number of 
filiferous capsules, exactly resembling in essential 
points, those of certain Medusse. 

Tlie capsules are transparent and colourless, in 
shape a long oval from ^ to ^^ inch in length, and 
are seen to contain a thread closely coiled. When 
the pressure reaches a certain point, the capsule 
shoots forth from one end the elastic thread, -which 
in a moment starts out like a spring to a length thirty 
times as great as that of the capsule : sometimes in a 
straight line, sometimes in a serpentine or (as ] 
rather believe) a spiral form. The capsules do not 
hurst, yet at the instant of the propulsion of their 
filament there is a distinct crack heard. 

I now cut off carefully, with fine-pointed scissors, 
two or three tentacles from one fully expanded, and 
submitted them to the same scrutinv. The rounded 
head of the tentacle appeared rather rough or hairy 
at first, but as pressure began to flatten it, filiferous 
capsules were seen to be protruding from the outline, 
w^hich increased in number as the pressure proceeded, 
until an amazing multitude appeared, and the whole 
substance of the tentacle-head was seen to be literally 
composed of these capsules, as thick as spiculee in any 
sponge, with only a slight quantity of gelatinous mat- 
ter to hold them together. To see these thousands of 
little vesicles discharging their missiles in rapid 
succession, like the flights of arrows in ancient battles, 
was an astonishing sight. When the propulsion 
could be distinctly followed by the eye there was always 
seen a little zigzag line on each side of the thread 
reaching to a considerable distance from the base, 


which I at first thought indicated a delicate memhrane 
pushed out from the orifice of the capsule hy the 
projected thread, until it at length burst, and shrank 
back in folds around the base. The form of the 
capsules differed from that of those described above, 
in that they were proportionally longer and more 
slender, being in fact almost linear. I could not 
discover any capsules ifi the body of the tentacle ; but 
only in the head. 

If, indeed, these projected bristles are so many darts 
injected into the bodies of those minute animals which 
are the prey of the Madrepore, accompanied, as we 
must suppose each puncture to be, to insure its effect? 
with a fatal poison, — does not their presence in the 
convoluted bands of the interior militate against the 
supposition that these bands are ovaries, especially as 
I have seen the curious manner in which these are 
appressed to the swallowed morsel ? Is it unreason- 
able to conjecture that their office may be accessory 
to that of the tentacles, destroying what may remain 
of life in the victim, after it has been inclosed by the 
lips, and is consequently out of the reach of the 
tentacles ? 

This inference was confirmed by the results of fur- 
ther investigation ; for, examining in the same man- 
ner other minute portions of the frilled bands, as I 
could detach them with the point of a pin, I at 
length found a piece in which the capsules were much 
more numerous, and vastly larger than any that I had 
yet seen, whether in the bands or the tentacle-heads. 
They were fully ^th inch in length, long-oval, but 
somewhat curved. Their size enabled me with a 


power of 300 diameters to see tlieir structure much 
more distinctly. 

At the larger end is situated a lozenge-shaped body 
reaching to the middle ; from the inner end of this, 
partly coiled round it, hut extending through the 
remainder of the capsule is the thread, lying in an 
irregular, rather loose spiral, the appearance of which 
differs considerably in different capsules. (See Plate 
XXYIII. fig. 14). When it is projected, the whole 
contents of the capsule disappear from the interior, 
in a manner which induces me to believe, strange as 
it seems, that the lozenge-shaped body at least, if not 
the whole thread, is turned completely inside-out ; for 
the extended thread is attached, not to the smaller, 
hat to the larger end, without the least appearance of 
rupture. (Fig. 15). 

Now for the structure of the thread, or wire, for it 
is as elastic as steel. This is marvellously elaborate, 
especially when we consider its excessive tenuity, the 
threads of the largest capsules being less than y^^^th 
of an inch in diameter, and those of the smallest per- 
haps ^5-^0^^^ ^^ ^^ inch. The basal part of the thread, 
to a length about halfas-great-again as that of the 
capsule, is clothed with alternate series of triangular 
plates, laid one over the other, or imbricated, like the 
scales of an artichoke. About half of this portion 
is furnished with an armature of hairs rather closely 
set, standing out at right angles, like a bottle-brush ; 
they are twice or thrice as long as the diameter of the 
thread, in the middle of the brush, but diminish to 
each end; the individual hairs taper to a point. 
(Fig. 16). 


T have offered a conjecture that the projection of 
the thread is an evolution of its interior, and I believe 
that it is a complete one through its whole length. I 
have, even since I wrote that conjecture, seen an 
example of the process, which I can scarcely describe 
intelligibly by words, but the witnessing of which 
left on my own mind scarcely a doubt of the fact. It 
was effected not with the flash-like rapidity common 
to the propulsion, but sufficiently slowly to be 
watched, and hy Jits or jerks, as if hindered by the 
tip of the lengthening thread being in contact with 
the glass. In consequence, probably, of this impedi- 
ment, it took a serpentine, not a straight form, and 
each hend of the course was made and stereo- 
typed (so to speak j in succession, while the tip went 
on lengthening ; and the appearance of this lengthen- 
ing tip was exactly like that of a glove-finger turning 
itself inside out. 

The brush of hairs, I think, is originally inclosed 
in the lozenge at the large end of the capsule. Both 
the lozenge and the brush are wanting in the small 
filiferous capsules ; when I observed them in the large 
ones, the suggestion occurred that I might have over- 
looked them in the smaller, on which I examined some 
afresh with the utmost care, but in each case, the thread, 
which at first occupied the whole cavity of the capsule 
without any lozenge, was simple when evolved. 

The capsules appear confined to the thickened edge 
of the frilled band, in which they are set side by side, 
pointing outwards. 

At the great recess of the tides in October I ob- 
served that the rocks and caves all about Ilfi'acombe 


were studded at low-water mark with this Madrepore, 
— a curious aud interesting spectacle. I obtained at 
this time a considerable number of individuals, many 
of which were of large size and of great beauty. 
Double specimens were numerous, triple ones not un- 
common, and I possess a four-fold one, the bodies 
being all agglomerated- into one, and the plated disks 
with the fleshy parts alone being separated ; these 
diverge in the form of a cross. (Plate V. fig. 5). I 
presume that these forms are to be accounted for by 
supposing that two, three, or four gemmules hap- 
pened to affix themselves near together, and that in 
process of growth, the stony particles deposited be- 
came soldered together. The appearance however of 
the specimens is that of a hranchinc/ Coral. 

The Madrepore is as easily kept in captivity as an 
Actinia, and from its beauty is particularly suited to 
an inmate of such a marine aquarium for the parlour 
as I have been endeavouring to form, and shall pre- 
sently describe. At the time of these pages going to 
press I have specimens which have been in my pos- 
session more than eight months. 

Plate V, fig. 2, represents Caryophtjllia Smithii, 
of the natural size, a fine specimen, much distended, 
but little expanded. Fig. 3 is a smaller one, in a 
different condition. Fig. 1. One fully expanded, 
about 2 J times as large as life (linear measure). 
Fig. -5. The quadruple specimen above-mentioned. 
Fig. 4. The calcareous skeleton split open, to show 
the internal structure : — magnified %\ times. 


A Walk to Hele — Bird's-eye View of the Harbour — Quay Fields 
— Lion Rock — Hele Strand — A threatened Shipwreck — Eu- 
cratea — Description — Mode of Growth — Form of the Cell — • 
Structure of the Polype — Tentacles — Digestive System — Mus- 
cular Bands — Evanescence of the radiate Character — Root- 
Thread — Snake-head Coralline— Frill — Vermicular Organs — 
Door and Hinge — Ciliated Cellularia — Cells — Spines — Birds' 
Heads — Their Motions — Slimy Laomedea — Structure of a 
Sertularian Zoophyte — Its Contraction — Marginal Folds of 
the Cell — Researches in Gastronomy — Anemones cooked — 
Eaten — Commended — Best mode of preparing them — Anthea 

A pleasant walk of about a mile leads to Hele, a 
picturesque village, inhabited chiefly by gardeners, 
laundresses, donkey-keepers and other persons, whose 
subsistence is largely dependent on summer visitors 
to Ilfracombe. There is a foot-path through the 
fields to it, which is pleasanter than the carriage-road, 
and is a favourite walk with me. I like to stand in 
the quiet lane above the shipbuilder's yard, end look 
down upon the harbour, as I lean over the iron rail 
that guards the steep bushy cliff. The fishing-boats 
are perhaps just come in from trawling on the oppo- 
site side of the Channel, and the idlers are crowding 
down to the quay-steps to see the fish as it is landed. 
Pleasure skiff's full of laughing ladies and attentive 


beaux are leaving the stairs for a few hours' sail 
along the coast. The Bristol Steamer at the pier-head 
is impatiently blowing off her waste-steam, as some 
tardy passenger is seen bustling along with babies 
and luggage, almost too late. The coasting schooners 
are taking in or discharging cargo; below my feet is a 
busy scene, where the brawny shipwrights are wielding 
the hammer and adze with continuous din around the 
growing skeleton of a fine ship. All this is pleasant 
to contemplate on a sunny day from the elevated nook 
I speak of, its bowery quietness forming an agree- 
able contrast with the bustle below. 

Down the slope of the Quay fields, over the rustic 
bridge that strides the deep road leading to Larkstone 
Cove, between hedges full of blossom, on which the 
gay tortoise-shell butterfly is fluttering, and scores of 
banded and yellow snails are crawling, and along the 
foot-path through the corn across Brimlm's fields to 
the high road. In the midst of these fields, if we 
pause and turn, we shall get a fine and commanding 
view of the town. The slopes above the terraces on 
the left, and the majestic Hillsborough on the right, 
form a sort of ample basin, in which a wide expanse 
of sea lies, half filling the concave. In the centre 
rises Capstone Hill, a conical mass verdant to the 
summit, and crowned with its signal-staff; and below 
the base of this is seen the harbour and the lower 
part of the town. Between Capstone and the Eun- 
nacleaves, the green slopes to the left, is the favourite 
bathing cove of Wildersmouth, through which we 
have a fine view of the sea ; and here, if the tide be 
in, the stranger's eye can hardly fail to be attracted 


by an insular rock at some distance from the shore, 
that bears a very faithful resemblance to a couching 
lion. It is visible of course at all times, except at 
very high spring-tides, when the sea reaches the level 
of the colossal statue's back, but it is only the apex 
of the rock that forms the likeness, and this is of 
course less conspicuous when the shapeless lower 
part is also exposed. 

I said that Hele is a picturesque village. The 
houses are partly placed around the base of Hillsbo- 
rough, up whose steep side the gardens extend, and 
pai-tly up a lovely valley. A brawling brook comes 
down through this wooded glen, turns the village 
mill-wheel, and runs off to the sea between two walls, 
one of which forms a causeway about a yard in width, 
between the cottage-doors and the water-course. 

This leads us to the cove, — Hele Strand as it is 
called, — an admixture, like all the coves hereabout, of 
pebbly beach and ledges of rough rock, with many 
sharp ragged points and eminences rising on every 
hand. The bounding promontories that form the 
inlet are of the same rough character, wildly pictur- 
esque to look at, but scarcely less unapproachable 
than chevaux de jrize. 

Almost every little cove with which this iron-bound 
coast is indented has its legendary story of shipwreck, 
or marvellous escape from shipwreck. Our landlady's 
daughter is eloquent in her description of an incident 
of the latter character that occured in this little cove. 
I will give it you as nearly as possible in her own 

"There was a little vessel called the 'Maid of 


Alicant', a fruiterer. I don't exactly know -whether 
she was a brig or a schooner, but she had two masts, 
and I remember she had what I call D-sai]s.* She 
was a beautiful little thing, just like a gentleman's 
yacht. Well, sir, it was on the 6th of December, 
about four or five winters ago, that there was a 
report in Ilfracombe, about a vessel going on the 
rocks at Hele. Almost the whole town went out to 
see, and I went among the rest. 0, it was such a 
dreadful sight ! It was blowing a perfect storm, and 
the sea upon the rocks was rolling mountains high ! 
The little vessel had dropped her anchor just within 
the cove ; every body was expecting that every wave 
would loose her hold, and then there would have been 
no help, but she must have been immediately dashed 
to pieces on the rocks. We gould see the crew 
standing up, and could hear their cries and screams 
for help. One gentleman wanted to strip and swim 
off to her, but the people held him back, because you 
know, sir, though he was a very good swimmer, he 
could not have given them any assistance. The hob- 
blers, (that is what we call the men that own little 
boats, and get their living partly by fishing, partly by 
piloting, and partly by letting out their boats for 
hire) wanted to try to go round to her from Ilfra- 
combe, to bring the crew ashore, for there are no boats 
at Hele ; but the hobblers' wives hung round them, 
and some even went down on their knees, beseeching 

* This odd expression she explained. It was an original and inge- 
nious mode of indicating what are technically called "square-sails," 
looked at edge-wise, when bellying out before the wind ; the mast 
being the upright part of the D. 


them not to risk their lives ; for it was blowing a 
most dreadful gale. So nobody went off, but the 
little anchor held on beautifullY, and the vessel rode 
out the storm till the next day. Then the wind 
abated, so that she was able to come round to Ilfra- 
combe harbour ; and it was a very wonderful deliver- 
ance. She was repaired here, and I have often seen 
her in the harbour since." 

'Tis pleasant by the cheerful hearth, to hear 
Of tempests, and the dangers of the deep, 
And pause at times, and feel that we are safe ; 
Then listen to the perilous tale again, 
And with an eager and suspended soul 
Woo terror to delight us. 

Madoc. IV. 


In a round and deep little pool in a rock at Hele, 
overshadowed by its side, and almost as regular in its 
form as if it had been chiselled by human art, I found 
two specimens of Caryophyllia ; and close to it, in 
another open pool, grew Dasya arhuscula, on the old 
decaying frond-stalks of which that rather rare and 
very pretty zoophyte, Eucratea chelata, was numerous. 
The inhabiting polypes were in high health and 
activity, and afforded me an opportunity of making 
myself acquainted with their structure. 

The Polypidom is irregularly branched, but the 
whole is composed of cells in single series, and 
springs from a single cell at the base. The normal 
shape of the cell has been compared to a bull's horn, 
(perhaps a powder-horn would be a better compari- 


son,) the outline being nearly half a crescent. The 
increase of the branch is effected by a cell growing 
out of the upper and outer rim, the aperture being 
obliquely truncate ; from the outer rim of this 
another grows ; and so on in succession for an indefi- 
nite number. But when a new branch is to be formed, 
the first cell of which- it is to be composed shoots 
from the inner and lower rim, and the cells then face 
the opposite way to those of the original shoot. The 
basal part of the cells is slender for some distance 
before the expansion commences ; and the germina- 
tion of a new cell is a slender tubular process ; and 
this, in the case of the commencement of a branch, 
is the explanation of '' the spinous process beneath 
the rim," which is mentioned in the specific character 
by Ellis as if it were an essential part of the cell, 
which it is not. The name chelata (clawed), if 
derived, as I presume, from this supposed spine, is 
therefore a misnomer. 

The cells are pellucid white, but when viewed by 
transmitted light are tinged of a yellowish horn 
colour. They are, however, perfectly transparent, 
especially the upper ones, for those nearest the b«.se 
are more horny, and are liable to become studded 
with parasitic Diatomacece. 

The aperture of the cell is large, oval, oblique, and 
surrounded by a rather high rim. This is covered 
with an elastic membrane, which, when the polype is 
withdrawn into its cell, projects considerably beyond 
the rim (as seen in Fig. 3, Plate VL), but, when the 
animal is projected to its utmost (as in Fig. 4), 
shrinks within the homy rim and becomes concave. 



The actual orifice for the emission of the animal is at 
the upper and outer part of this membrane, where the 
integuments are protruded by gradual evolution, 
according to the universal rule in this Class of 
Zoophytes, in three successive stages, which resemble, 
when fully protruded, the slides of a telescope. The 
first of these is horny, and has a sort of spine on the 
inner margin ; the second, of about the same length, 
is of the most delicate filmy transparency, and has its 
margin surrounded by a sort of scolloped frill, com- 
posed of short ribs united by a waved membrane,* 
and diverging at right angles to the tube. From this 
projects the third, which generally bulges more or 
less at the back or outer side, where the orifice of 
the rectum is situate. A bell of twelve ciliated 
tentacles, nearly as long as the interior of a cell, crowns 
this last evolution ; and the whole when extended to 
the utmost, is more than commonly prominent. 

Let us now examine the anatomical structure of 
this beautiful animal. The tentacles are slender fila- 
ments, set with cilia, which are seen to be hairs of 
extreme tenuity, and at least five or six times as long 
as the diameter of the tentacle. This, however, can 
be detected only by using a high power (say 200 
linear) with delicate manipulation, when the ciliary 
action is suspended ; as when the tentacles are in the 
act of emerging. The waves of the ciliary motion 
run (as usual in Polyzoan zoophytes) up one side of 

* This marginal frill is, I presume, analogous to those fine setse, con- 
nected by a membrane, which Dr. Farre has described as surrounding 
the sheathing tube of the polype, in Bowerhankia densa. (Phil. Trans. 

Tlaie VI. 

TH Irasst del ethdi 

Frtniel hyHuRmahdel & WaUeih. 



the tentacle and down the other. A slender thread is 
seen to pass through the centre of eacli tentacle, con- 
nected with a thickened ring which surrounds the 
hase of the circle; possibly this is nervous in its 

The tentacles are set around a circular mouth, 
which leads into a faniiel-shaped gullet, the walls of 
which are thick, granular, expansile and contractile, 
and highly sensitive. From the outer (or upper) side 
of its margin, there is given off a singular thick band 
apparently identical in texture with the walls of the 
gullet, which passing down by the side of this cavity 
unites with it at a short distance, being free in the 
greater part of its course, but connected with the 
gullet at each extremity. The use of this curious 
hand I cannot, after many and careful examinations, 
discover. It appears equally sensitive with the gullet ; 
a vertical aspect shows that it is not, as I was dis- 
posed to imagine, tubular; and I do not think it is a 
muscle. It must not be confounded with the rectum, 
which is quite distinct, though on the same side. 

The gullet passes into a lengthened tube, which 
after a narrowing, becomes slightly swollen, and pre- 
sents the same granular texture with minute trans- 
verse corrugations, as the funnel of the gullet. After 
another constriction it opens into a long-oval stomach, 
which occupies nearly the centre of the cell, and for 
a reason which I shall presently mention, is capable 
of but little change of position. 

Close to the entrance of the first stomach is the 

exit, the intestine being inserted in the upper end of 

his viscus, just behind the extremity of the gullet. 


It is a short thick tube, and presently leads into an 
oval second stomach, closely resembling the former, 
but a little smaller. Both have thick walls, and their 
internal surface is lined Avith cilia, by whose action 
the contents are formed into lengthened pellets, and 
continually made to revolve on their long axes. From 
the upper extremity of the second stomach proceeds 
a slender but expansile tube of great length, which 
may be called the rectum, and which proceeds upwards 
parallel with and behind the gullet, to its terminal 
aperture, on the posterior side of the head, a little 
below the tentacular ring. 

The first and second stomachs, and the intestines 
connected with them, retain their position perma- 
nently ; at least so far as any change might be pro- 
duced by retractation ; for the lower extremity of the 
first stomach is bound to a slender thread, which 
passes up from the preceding polype, through a fora- 
men in the bottom of the cell. This thread appears 
to merge into the integument of the stomach ; and at 
its upper extremity, it collects again into a thread, 
which goes up through the back of the cell into the 
tubular foot of the next, aud through the foramen at 
its bottom to be tied to the extremity of the stomach 
of the succeeding polype, in like manner. This 
thread is the link of vital connection, and, as far as I 
can see, the only one, between the individual polypes, 
uniting them in a corporate life. When a new branch 
is to be formed, another thread goes off from the 
lower extremity of the stomach, to the front margin 
of the cell, where as I have described above, the new 
branch pullulates, and enters the tube, as in the other 


case. The course of this thread is indicated by the 
dotted line in fig. 4. 

These threads tie the stomach to one position m 
the cell ; but besides these there is another thread, 
which is fastened to the hinder part of this viscus, and 
passes down diagonally to the hinder part of the cell, 
•where it is inserted in the walls. Thus the only 
motion permitted to the stomach is, that it may swing 
a little backward by the elasticity of the connecting 
threads, and this is allowed, to make room for the 
anterior parts to retire within the cell. These, for- 
cibly retracted by muscles presently to be described, 
push the first stomach, and in a less degree, the 
second also, out of the centre, towards or even into 
contact with, the hinder wall of the cell : as it is seen 
in Fig. 3. 

Many bands of muscular fibre appear with beauti- 
ful distinctness in this zoophyte. The great retractor 
muscle runs alono;' the whole lenofth of the animal on 
the ventral or front surface. It is inserted into the 
front side of the tubular foot of the cell, a good w^ay 
below the bottom of the cavity, through which it must 
pass, and which therefore must be perforated near its 
front margin as well as in the centre. The muscle 
is a ribbon of fibres, which widen and diverge as they 
proceed, so as to be narrowly fan-shaped ; the broad 
end is fastened into the body of the animal, probably at 
one or other of the points where the integument sheaths, 
but I have not been able to trace it much beyond the 
margin of the cell in the extruded animal. It is 
certainly free for the greater part of its length, for I 
have seen it, in partial retractation, thrown into sinu- 


oiis curves, when its flat ribbon-like form was also 
distinctly shown. It is evident, from the necessity of 
the case, that this or any other retractor muscle must 
perforate the integument and be inserted in the inner 
surface, in order to sheath it in the manner in which 
this operation is known to take place : but at what 
point this perforation occurs, the transparency of the 
parts forbids my detecting. 

There is a second muscle, (or rather perhaps a sym- 
metrical pair,) inserted in the hinder wall of the cell 
just below the point whence the new cell grows. Its 
insertion here is broad, and it narrows upward ; I can 
trace this to the bottom of the funnel of the gullet : 
and its contraction is probably the first step in the 
process of retractation. Beyond this point, the funnel 
and the tentacles are not inverted, but descend directly 
by the introversion of the integuments below them ; 
the tentacles merely closing together in a fascia, as 
they descend. 

Besides these, there are inserted within the horny 
margin of the cell, some eight or ten bands, or perhaps 
more, composed of parallel fibres. The course, and 
use of these are very difficult to make out intelligibly, 
from their apparently contradictory appearances in 
different aspects and circumstances. I incline to 
think however that they pass from the corneous rim, 
to various parts of the lining membrane, and in 
particular to that portion of it which covers-in the 
broTtd aperture of the cell, — that which I have 
described as prominently convex and protuberant 
during the retractation of the animal, and concave 
during its extrusion. I venture to presume that it is 


by the means of these muscles that the extrusion of the 
polype takes place : these muscle-hands, drawing in 
the membrane to a concave form, diminish the con- . 
tained space, which is already full, either with water, 
or as I rather suppose with the vital juices; the only 
yielding part is the long body of the polype, 
which accordingly is forced out through the proper 

It is manifest that the radiate structure is becoming 
a subordinate character in these zoophytes ; at least 
so far as that character implies a perfect circular 
symmetry. This Eucratea for example has certainly 
a dorsal aspect and a ventral one : the direction of 
the intestinal canal, and the position of the excretory 
orifice making sufficiently plain which is the former. 
For from this arrangement, which is almost exactly 
repeated in some of the tubicolous Rotifera, as 
CEcistes for example, the oval orifice is gradually 
brought lower down the back by successive stages in 
Melicerta, Lininias, and Steplianoceros ; until in Mo- 
nocerca, Furcularia, and Notommata among the 
illoricate Eotifera, it attains the normal situation 
which it holds in the higher animals. Hence I have 
not scrupled to call this the dorsal side of the zoo- 
phyte, in the preceding description. While on this 
subject I may mention that Eucratea frequently 
inflates the membranous integument just below 
the anus, in a manner common to many of the 

The ciliary action is doubtless in some measure 
involuntary ; but the tentacles have the power of 
separate and voluntary movement. I observed an 


animal, apparantly annoyed by the introduction into 
the tentacular vortex of a mass of foecal matter recently 
discharged, drive it out again forcibly, by altering the 
current in some way : it was presently drawn in 
again, and again driven forth; again and again it 
returned. At length, as if convinced that other 
means must be resorted to to get rid of the intrusion, 
the animal suddenly bent inwards one of the tentacles, 
and by a beautifully precise and momentary action, 
pushed out the substance sidetvays^ or lifted it out as 
it w^ere, and it returned no more. 

Though very sensitive, — often, when in the midst of 
full play, suddenly withdrawing in an instant within 
the protection of the cell, and remaining there, perhaps 
for hours, before it ventures to peep forth again, and 
that without any cause of alarm appreciable by us, — 
the animal is not easily induced to retract by any tap 
or jar given to the table, or even to the vessel in 
which it is held. Nor does the admixture of indigo 
with the water cause it to suspend its motion, as is 
frequently the case when we wish to administer pig- 
ment to zoophytes. The colour is readily imbibed, 
and affords, by its conspicuous visibility, an excellent 
demonstration of the course of the digestive system. 

The form of the cells is liable to considerable 
variation from that which is normal ; but not so 
great as to make it all difficult to be recognized. 
The degree to which the animal can protrude itself 
differs greatly in different specimens, perhaps also 
with the will of the animal. I have drawn one in ex- 
treme extension, in which the distance from the base 
of the tentacles to the margin of the cell was about 


equal to the depth of the cell measured to the 
rounded bottom. The tentacles themselves were 
nearly as much more. The average length of a well- 
grown cell is about-^th of an inch, measured from its 
origin to its dorsal margin ; of this the cavity, and 
the foot or tube, make nearly an equal division. 

Another specimen shows me more distinctly the 
manner of growth. Along the deJicate frond of a 
Rhodymenia, runs a shelly pellucid thread of excessive 
tenacity, from which, at intervals of about a line, 
spring up the rows of single cells. The whole appear- 
ance reminds me of a Laomedea. The foot of the 
first cell, at its emergence from the root thread, is 
constricted at short intervals, so as to resemble joints, 
or nodes. In another case the thread wanders over 
the rock, or rather over the thin stratum of incipient 
Coralline, which covers it. (Fig. 2.) 

No ray of phosphoric light was elicited on plunging 
specimens into fresh water in the dark, though the 
experiment was repeatedly tried. 

Fig. 1 represents the zoophyte of the natural size. 
Fig. 2, the same enlarged. Fig. 3, A single polype, 
viewed sidewise, retracted, much magnified. Fig. 4, 
the same extruded. Fig. 5, the same, retracted, viewed 
in front. 


The crevices between the slanting ridges of the 
slaty rocks at Hele fonn little angular pools, densely 
fringed with various species of red sea-weeds, many 
of which are of exceeding delicacy and beauty, and 


grow under the shadow of the overhanging ridges 
with profuse luxuriance. Among these I found that 
elegant species, Delesseria hyporjlossum. Around its 
base and twining up the lower part of its frond were 
two interesting little zoophytes which had entwined 
their slender trailing stems with each other, in irregu- 
lar tortuous windings, forming a sort of mat. One of 
these was Anyuinaria spatulata. It consists of a 
long creeping stem, which embraces the sea-vv^eed, 
just as a creeping plant does a tree, throwing out, at 
irregular intervals, the cells, which form the habi- 
tations of the polypes. These cells are unlike those 
of any other zoophyte ; each consist of a bent cylin- 
drical neck of considerable length, swollen at the end 
into an oblong head, which is open on one side some- 
what like a spoon, (Plate VIT, fig. 15) ; whence the 
specific name : the resemblance however of the cell to 
the head of a snake is much more obvious, and has 
given rise to the generic appellation, and this likeness 
is increased by nmnerous rings that surround the 
neck throughout its length, somewhat like the cart- 
lages of the windpipe. The swollen head is marked 
with minute punctured dots, an'anged in lines paral- 
lel to the rings of the neck, of which they are a con- 
tinuation ; though the distinction between them is 
abrupt and well marked. A polype of tvvelve slender 
tentacles protrudes in a funnel-like form from the 
end of the cell (Fig. 8), or contracts itself into the 
neck, along which the tentacles then lie close-pressed, 
as a bundle of parallel fibres. 

June 2i:th. I saw an Anguiuaria with the mem- 
branous sheath of the polype partly extruded, the 

FLaie V/f. dddliih Pnntejl hyjailLrniiTuifJ?: WalUn 

1,7 CELLUjLARIA ciltata. 



extremity of Tvliich was surrounded by an extremely 
delicate fringe or frill of filmy rays united by a den- 
tated or vandyked membrane, closely resembling that 
of Eucratea. Tlie appearance of the protruded mem- 
brane and the cell, I have very carefully copied at 
Fig. 9 ; but the relation of the parts to each other is 
very difficult to understand. The interior of the 
sheath contains many very slender threads constantly 
waving with a vermicular motion; indeed they might 
be mistaken for minute intestinal worms. They are 
probably long ciliary hairs. 

Aug. \^th. A stem of Plunmlaria cristata, itself 
parasitic on the shell of a Crab, was covered for 
its basal half with a numerous colony of Anguinaria 
scutulata, and for its terminal half wdth one equally 
crowded of Plum, setacea. An examination of the 
former enables me to add a little to my knowledge of 
this curious zoophyte. I perceive that the terminal 
extremitv of the head is furnished with a sort of door 
that works on hinges. When the polype is throughly 
retracted, this is closed, and held firmly down by 
means of a ligamentous muscle fastened to its interior, 
and connected with the animal. When the latter 
relaxes, the door begins to open, I presume by the 
elasticity of the hinge acting as a spring; and as the 
polype protrudes, the door in proportion falls back, 
until it makes more than a right angle with its closed 
position. It appears to consist of a half- ring of homy 
substance, across which is stretched a delicate mem- 
brane, continuous with that which covers the large 
ventral aperture. I have seen it in many individuals, 
in various aspects and positions, and have witnessed 


the opening and closing of it repeatedly. It is a beau- 
tiful piece of mechanism, contrived for the protection 
of the delicate little inhabitant, permitting him to 
inhale the surrounding fluid without exposing himself, 
and enabling him in a moment to shut and bar his 
gate on the approach of danger. For I see that it is 
not necessary that the polype should protrude in order 
that the door should open widely ; this seems to be 
dependent on the relaxation of the muscular ligament ; 
it is often wdde open while the animal is far within, 
then in a moment it is pulled to, with a simultaneous 
shrinking on the part of the inhabitant, though with- 
out any appreciable withdrawing further. 

Figs. 10 to 12 ; lateral views, the door open in dif- 
ferent degrees. 13, 14 ; back views, door open, and 

Anguinaria spatulata, though described as rare, is 
by no means uncommon in this neighbourhood. It is 
very frequently found densely investing the stems and 
fronds of the smaller sea-weeds that grow at low 


Still more abundant is another species, like the 
former frequently parasitic on sea-weeds, but less 
exclusivelv so, Cellularia ciliata. 

To the naked eye it appears like a minute shrub 
composed of numerous branches rising to about half 
an inch in height. With the microscope the branches 
are seen to be set with a number of transparent cells, 
somewhat like a wine glass in form with the rim 
oblique. They are set alternately on opposite sides 


of the branch. From the higher and outer side of 
the rim spring five long and slender spines gracefully 
curved, "which are each affixed by a joint to a tubercle 
on the rim. A sixth spine exactly similar springs 
from a little below the margin on the outer side,*'" and 
a seventh from the middle of the inner rim. In mv 
specimens these spines are of great length ; on some 
of the older cells I have seen them four and even five 
times as long as the cells. The spines grow after the 
cells are formed : for on the same branch may be seen 
oval cells not yet opened, yet containing the polype, 
mthout the least appearance of spines ; others on 
which they are just budding; others on which they 
are short but distinct ; and so on in all intermediate 
stages of growth, through those in which they are 
perfect in length and number, to those near the base 
of the branch, fi'om which the polypes have died out, 
and from whose margin the spines have been eithei 
partially or wholly broken ofl\ The polypes that 
inhabit these cells have about twelve tentacles, 
but I have not been able to see one in a state oi 
expansion, beneath the microscope. They remain 
contracted within their cells, their tentacles wrinkled 
up and pressed together, and showing no voluntary 
motion, except now and then a spasmodic contraction, 
on a slight shifting of some of their parts. Their 

* Dr. Johnston (Br. Zooph. i. 335,) says, "on the inner side," but 
I am sure this is a mistake. The perfect transparency of these crea- 
tures often renders it difficult to determine on which side of the glassy 
surface any given point is. By delicate focusing, however, I have dis- 
tinctly proved this spine to originate on the outside, as indeed was, 
a prion, more likely. 


146 THE birds' heads. 

transparency however permits the intestines to be 
perfectly visible, and the contents of these, of a yell 
lowish colour, are often seen whirled round and round 
with a rapid movement, doubtless by the action of 
internal cilia. 

But the most singular chapter in the history of this 
polype is the presence of some curious appendages 
which it has in common with a few more species of 
the same family. On the outside of some (not all) of 
the cells, in this species, there is a little tubercle near 
the bottom, to which is articulated by a slender joint 
an organ which has been aptly compared to the naked 
head of a vulture. It has a beak with two mandibles, 
of which the lower alone is moveable, opening and 
shutting like that of a bird, but with a far greater 
width of gape ; for the lower mandible can be opened 
till it extends in the same line with the upper. The 
upper mandible is furnished with five strongly pro- 
jecting teeth on each edge; the lower has a single 
tooth at its point, which fits into the notch between 
the terminal pair of the upper. The whole of the 
back of the head is wrinkled transverselv. 

The motions of this strange appendage are in keep- 
ing with its curious structure. The whole head 
ordinarily sways to and fro upon the slender joint at 
the poll, at inten-als of a few seconds ; but besides 
this motion, which is even, though rather quick, 
the lower mandible, which commonly gapes to its 
utmost extent, now and then at irregular intervals 
closes with a strong sudden snap, much like the snap- 
ping of a turtle's jaws, and presently again opens, and 
leisurely resumes its former expansion. The muscles 


•which move the lower mandible are distinctly seen, 
occupying the position of the palate, and extending 
back to the inner surface of the skull, if we may use 
such terms for an organization so remote. These 
motions are highly singular to witness, and one can 
scarcely look upon them without ascribing them to 
an active volition in the animal. 

But curious questions arise in connection vrith 
these birds' heads. Are they a part of the organiza- 
tion of the polype ? If so, why are they found 
attached to some cells, and not to others ? whv to 
some specimens and not to others ? and why are some 
species of a genus furnished with them, while others, 
essentially the same in every other respect, are desti- 
tute of any such appendage ? 

Anatomical examination does not throw any light 
on these questions. The animal within the cell appears 
to be organically independent of the bird's head, for 
as Dr. Eeid affirms, and as I have myself witnessed 
in another species, the latter continues its movements 
for a considerable time after the polype has been dead. 
Dr. Johnston suggests that the use of the organ is to 
grasp and kill passing animalcules, which then may 
be drawn into the cell by means of the ciliary currents 
of the tentacles ; and this seems to me not improba- 
ble, and receives confirmation from the toothed 
structure of the beak, which, though strongly marked, 
I have not seen noticed. Plate YII. Fig. 1. Cellii- 
laria ciliata, nat. size. 2. a portion of a branch, 
(magnified 200 diameters.) 3. a cell containing the 
contracted polype. 4. the bird's head appended to 
it. 5. an immature cell. 6. the bird's head more 


enlarged, seen from "beneath. 7. the same viewed 


I have not at all entered into the structm^e of the 
polype itself in the preceding description ; for the 
specimens that I have as yet observed were not in 
sufficient vigour to allow me to have a sight of one at 
work. It is only under very favourable circumstances 
that these sensitive creatures will display their beauti- 
fully delicate organization ; in nine cases out of ten, 
or even more, you will find the polypes forcibly con- 
tracted within their cells, and pertinaciously refusing 
to protrude themselves until they die. 


May \^th. A very clean aiid beautiful specimen of 
Laomedea gelaiinosa affords me an excellent example 
of the structure of a Sertularian polype ; the more so 
because the stem carries but a single cell, the inha- 
bitant of which expands w^ith the utmost confi- 
dence. From a fibrous thread that creeps along the 
lilac crust of a Coralline, springs up a slender 
transparent tube standing erect to a great height as 
compared with its thickness, sending off at remote 
intervals branches on either side. These branches 
are marked just above their commencement and just 
before their termination with a number of constrictions, 
causing the substance between to assume the form of 
so many rounded joints, or appearing as if tied 
tightly round. The end of each branch bears an 
elegant vase-like cell, in form like a deep ale-glass, of 


the most hyaline transparency. Such is the polypi- 
dom, which appears to me to he perfectly homogene- 
ous, though some ohservers profess to have seen a 
delicate net-work of vessels ramifying through its 
walls. This horny tuhe, however, is peraieated hy a 
central core of living flesh, of a thin gelatinous tex- 
ture, which runs through the whole stalk and through 
each branch, without any apparent variation until it 
reaches the cells. A good microscope shows that the 
flesh of the polypidom is tubular ; its walls are com- 
posed of a clear jelly inclosing a loose texture of 
equally colourless granules. The tubular interior 
appears to be filled with a subtle fluid, in which mi- 
nute colourless granules may be seen here and there to 
move with an irregular quivering dancing motion, to 
and fro or round and round, but not with any definite 
order or progression. The motion does not appear 
to be ciliary, but more like that of the granules in 
the cells of plants, except that it is more minute, 
and follows no settled order. Intervals occur in 
which no such motion can be traced ; the dancing 
globules are very minute and few, but obvious enough, 
if carefully looked for. 

A little above the bottom of the cell there is a par- 
tition or false bottom running across, perforated in the 
centre, because the core of flesh passes through it. 
From this point may be considered to commence each 
polype : the body is homogeneous with the fleshy core, 
which it a little exceeds in thickness, being dilated how- 
ever into a sort of cushion at the bottom, which rests 
on the partition. At its upper part it spreads into a 
star of many rays, very elegantly expanding over and 


around the edge of the vase-like cell. The rays or 
tentacles are slender and long, of equal thickness 
throughout, and marked with numerous whorls of 
rough projecting points, which appear to me to ter- 
minate in very fine but short bristles, not however of 
a ciliary nature. I cannot discern any vortex produ- 
ced by the tentacles at all. When alarmed, or when 
the water becomes deoxygenated, the polype contracts 
its whole body (uniformly by a real contraction of its 
substance, not by an involution of the parts,) and 
draws the tentacles within the cell in a parallel bun- 
dle. If further annoyed, it contracts still more, both 
the body and the tentacles themselves, which can be 
reduced in length, until they look like so many teats 
or fingers. 

When thus contracted the margin of the cell can be 
examined. In this specimen there is no extraneous 
matter adhering, which is a great advantage : the edge 
however is so subtle that it is only at the sides that 
it can be distinctly seen. I perceive that it is trans- 
verse ; I think perfectly so, but the sides themselves 
form angular longitudinal folds near and at the edge, 
which may perhaps account for the conflicting de- 
scription of this species, as having an even or a serru- 
late rim. 


And now for a paragraph of cookery. Dicque- 
mare's testimony to the excellence of Actinia crassi- 
cornis for the table tempted me to taste it, and I 
determined to take an early opportunity of cooking a 

A NEW DISI-I. 151 

few. In a few minutes I collected some half a dozen 
of different sizes at low water near Wildersmouth, and 
having rubbed them with my fingers in a tide-pool 
till the coating of gravel was pretty well got rid of, 
brought them home. I put them into a pan of sea 
water for the night to cleanse them, and most beauti- 
ful and gorgeous was the appearance they presented 
when expanded ; no two alike in colours, and yet all 
so lovely that it was difficult to say which excelled. 
Perhaps one with the tentacles partly cream-colour 
and partly white was as beautiful as any. 

The next morning, however, I began operations. 
As it was an experiment, I did not choose to commit 
my pet morsels to the servants, but took the sauce- 
pan into my own hand. As I had no information 
as to how long they required boiling, I had to find it 
out for myself. Some I put into the water (,9<?a-water) 
cold, and allowed to boil gradually. As soon as the 
water boiled, I tried one : it was tough, and evidently 
undone. The next I took out after three minutes' 
boiling : this was better ; and one at five minutes' 
was better still ; but not so good as one which had 
boiled ten. I then put the remaining ones into the 
hoiling water, and let them remain over the fire boil- 
ing fast for ten minutes, and these were the best of 
all, being more tender, as well as of a more inviting 

I must confess that the first bit I essayed caused a 
sort of lumpy feeling in my throat, as if a sentinel 
there guarded the way, and said " It shan't come here." 
This sensation, however, I felt to be unworthy of a 
philosopher, for there was nothing really repugnant 


in the taste. As soon as I liacl got one that seemed 
well cooked, I invited Mrs. G. to share the feast; 
she courageously attacked the morsel, but I am com- 
pelled to confess it could not pass the vestibule ; the 
sentinel was too many for her. My little boy, how- 
ever, voted that "'tinny was good," and that "he 
liked 'tinny ;" and loudly demanded more, like ano- 
ther Oliver Twist. As for me, I proved the truth of 
the adage, Ce nest que le pi^emier pas qui coute ; for 
my sentinel was cowed after the first defeat. T left 
little in the dish. 

In truth the flavour and taste are agreeable, some- 
what like those of the soft parts of crab ; I ate them 
hot, with the usual crab- condiments of salt, pepper, 
mustard, and vinegar, mixed into a sauce. The in- 
ternal parts, including the ovaries and the tentacles, 
though from their mottled appearance rather repelling 
to the eye, were the most agreeable in taste ; the in- 
teguments somewhat reminded me of the jelly-like 
skin of a calf's head. I wonder they are not com- 
monly brought to table, for they are easily procured, 
and are certainly far superior to cockles, periwinkles, 
and mussels. After a very little use, I am persuaded 
any one would get very fond of boiled Actinias. 

Some I had left with a little of the gravel still ad- 
hering, in order to see whether this would be thrown 
off, when life departed ; but it was not so. They should 
be cleansed before cooking, which can be easily and 
quickly done with the fingers under water ; the base 
also should be scraped, so as to remove any bits of 
slate or rock or dirt, that adhere to it. Attention to 
these particulars greatly improves the appearance 


when cooked. They are of a pellucid rosy hue, of a 
firm consistence; at least sufficiently firm to be readily 
cut with a knife. 

The next that I tried were prepared in a different 
manner, and truth to say, the experiment was far 
more successful this time. I cleansed them more 
perfectly, carefully scraping the bases, until they were 
freed from every particle of extraneous matter and 
from slime. These I had fried in egg and bread- 
crumbs, and they were very far superior to even the 
best on the former occasion. All prejudice yielded 
to their inviting odour and appearance, and the whole 
table joined in the repast with indubitable gusto. I 
know not if mv readers are familiar with a dish which 
in Newfoundland during the codfishing season we used 
to consider worthy of an epicure, — the tongues of the 
cod taken out as soon as the fish are brought on 
shore, and fried immediately. The Actiniae fried as 
above described I should scarcely be able to distin- 
guish, either by the eye or by the taste, from fresh cods' 
tongues, except that perhaps my proteges are slightly 
firmer in consistence. 

Anthea cereus I subsequently tried, prepared in the 
manner last mentioned. They too were savoury, but 
the sliminess of the tentacles was somewhat disagree- 
able. They are far less substantial, in proportion to 
their apparent size, than the Actiniae, little, indeed, 
remaining, but a mass of tentacles. When Dr. 
Johnston speaks of "the hot and peppery Anthea^' 
I presume he glances at its urticating properties, for 
there is no pungency in its taste. 


Charm of the Sea-side — "Watching the receding Tide— the Lion 
Rock — Approach of Evening — Its Accompaniments — The 
Warty Cycloum — Harvey's Syrinx — Capstone Hill — Its Pro- 
menade — Precipitous Walks — Noble Prospects — Sunset — 
Bird's-eye View — The Welsh Coast — Plowers — The Summit 
— Inland View — Seaward Rocks — Wilclersmouth — A fatal 
Accident — The Gemmed Anemone — Description — Habits — 
Production of the Young — Sea Spider — Black Sand- worm —  
A second Visit to Watermouth — Flowers — A Crab at Home 
— A walk to Lee — Beautiful Vallev — Character of the Cove 
— Stone-turning — The Worm Pipe-fish — Its Form and 
Colours — Manners in Captivity — Intelligence — Appearance 
of Disease — Surgical Aid — Difficulties of Microscopical 

The sea-side is never dull : other places soon tire 
us ; we cannot always be adrniring scenery, though 
ever so beautiful, and no body stands gazing into a 
field, or on a hedgerow bank, though studded with 
the most lovely flowers, by the half-hour together. 
But we can and do stand watching the sea, and feel 
reluctant to leave it : the changes of the tide, and the 
ever rolling, breaking, and retiring waves, are so 
much like the phenomena of life, that we look on 
with an interest and expectation akin to that with 
which we watch the proceedings of living beings. 
Last night we sat long to gaze on the receding tide 
from the promenade that looks out upon the little 


cove called Wildersmontli. It was spring-tide, and 
the water had just begun to ebb ; presently the sharp 
ledges of rock here and there began to peep above 
the surface, making black oblique lines upon the face 
of the water only just ruffled by the evening air, and 
reflecting all the ruddy glow of the north-west sky 
opposite. We thought of the Poet's words : — 

Bright with dilated glory shone the west ; 

But brighter lay the ocean-flood below, 

The burnish'd [golden] sea, that heav'd and flash'd 

Its restless rays, intolerably bright. 

JMadoc, ii. 

The most distant insular peak of rock needed not 
a warm fancy to form into a couching lion ; the re- 
semblance was very exact, and soon became even more 
perfect, by the sinking of the water revealing what 
seemed his outstretched fore paws. His face, his 
mane, the undulation of his back, and the rounded 
haunches Avere all represented in verisimilitude. 

How rapidly the sea leaves the beach ; yonder is an 
area distinguished from the rest by its unruffled smooth- 
ness on the recess of the wave ; presently a black 
speck appears on it ; now two or three more ; we fix 
our eyes on it,' and presently the specks thicken, they 
have become a patch, a patch of gravel ; the waves 
hide it as they come up, but in an instant or two we 
predict that it will be covered no more. Meanwhile 
the dark patch grows on every side ; it is now connect- 
ed with the beach above, first by a little isthmus at 
one end, inclosing a pool of clear perfectly smooth 
water, a miniature lagoon in which the young crescent 


moon is sharply reflected with inverted horns ; the 
isthmus widens as we watch it ; we can see it grow, 
and now the water is running out of the lakelet in a 
rapid ; the ridges of black rock shoot across it, they, 
unite ; — the pool is gone, and the water's edge, that 
was just now washing the foot of this causeway on 
which we are sitting, is now stretched from yonder 
points, with a great breadth of shingle-beach between 
it and us. And now the ruddy sea is bristling with 
points and ledges of rock, that are almost filling the 
foreground of what was just now a smooth expanse; 
and what were little scattered islets, now look like the 
mountain-peaks and ridges of a continent. The glow 
of the sky is fading to a ruddy chestnut-hue ; the moon 
and Venus are glittering brightly ; the little bats are 
out, and are flitting, on giddy wing, to and fro along 
the edge of the causeway, ever and anon wheeling 
around close to our feet. The dorrs too, with hum- 
drum flight, come one after another, and passing 
before our faces, are visible for a moment against the 
sky, as they shoot out to sea-ward. The moths are 
playing round the tops of the budding trees; the 
screaming swifts begin to disappear ; the stars are 
coming out all over the sky, and the moon that a 
short time before looked like a thread of silver, now 
resembles a bright and golden bow ; and night shuts 
up for the present the book of nature. 

'Tis spent, — this burning day of June ! 

Soft darkness o'er its latest gleams is stealing : 

The buzzing dor-hawk round and round is wheeling : — 

That solitary bird 

Is all that can be heard 

In silence deeper far than that of deepest noon ! 




I found at low water near the Tunnel what seems a 
curious variety of Cycloum papillosum. It embraces 
the slender stem of a red sea-weed, encrusting it all 
round, so as to form a cylindrical or sub -spindle- 
shaped mass, not at all lobed, an inch in length, and 
J inch in diameter. A portion of the membranous 
frond accidently hanging down, has been attached by 
the surface of the polypidom, and adheres firmly. 
The substance is fleshy, closely covered with conical 
papillae, which appear imperforate (under 200 lin.), 
and certainly do not contain the polypes ; they are 
more or less filled with green granules and vermicular 
threads, which give a colour to the whole mass, of 
olive brown. The polypes protrude seventeen long 
tentacles (I counted four or five specimens over and 
over, and invariablv found this the number) set with 
cilia, and expanding in the form of a bell. 

Harvey's syrinx. 

On turning over a flat stone at the water's edge at 
Wildersmouth I picked up a curious creature, not 
very attractive indeed to look at, but which I found, 
on examining Prof. Forbes' Brit. Starfishes at home, 
to be a rare species. Syrinx Harveii. His figure is 
admirably exact, and agrees with mine in size and 
contour. My specimen is lively for so dull a creature, 
inverting and unfolding its proboscis with great 
rapidity, and to a length fully equal to that of its 
whole body besides. The very extremity is encircled 


158 Harvey's syrinx. 

with several rows of short bristles, as if it had omitted 
to shave its beard since the day before, and when these 
are all everted, out pops a dense taft of white tenta- 
cula, like those of a half-expanded Actinia. These 
are no sooner exposed then they are infolded again, 
and the process of inversion runs rapidly down to 
the base of the proboscis, like the drawing of a 
stocking or a glove-finger within itself ; the tentacles, 
however, during the brief moment they remain out, 
are kept in quick motion, wriggling and twisting 
about among themselves. The whole proboscis is of 
a dull dirty brown, as is the abruptly-pointed tail ; 
they are both reticulated, being marked with coarse 
annular and longitudinal wrinkles : this texture, as 
well as the colour, is separated abruptly from that 
of the body. The latter is pure white, of a satiny 
lustre, smooth to the eye, but examined with a lens 
seen to be marked with innumerable fine punctures, 
oblong in form and connected with each other by 
very delicate transverse lines. The posterior half of 
the brown tail of this Syrinx was studded with little 
projections which I at first thought were the viscera 
forced through pores in the skin, but which I 
presently discovered, to my surprise, to be a colony 
of PedicellincB, (of the species Belgica, I believe) 
which had chosen this strange locality to spread their 
mat upon, surely without asking leave of the tail's 
owner. The gemmule having once fixed itself, was 
a tenant for life, and the various wanderings of the 
Syrinx could not displace its parasitic friend, but 
only carry it about, Avhile it proceeded to rear its 



The favorite promenade of visitors to Ilfracombe is 
on the side of Capstone Hill. The little town is 
built in a valley, that runs for awhile parallel to the 
sea, a range of hills rising like a w^all between it and 
the rocky coast, and thus sheltering it from the fierce 
cold breezes from the north and north-west, that pre- 
vail so greatly here, especially in winter. The newer 
parts of the town are arranged on the landward slope 
of the valley, forming handsome terraces on its steep 
side, and commanding those fine views of the sea that 
are so much admired over the seaward range of hills. 

In this range there is but one interruption, but one 
natural way of access to the shore. For the hills, 
though they present inviting verdant slopes on the 
valley side, are externally the most abrupt and rugged 
precipices, being cut down, as it w^ere, perpendicularly 
from their very summits to the w^ash of the tide. At 
one point, however, there is an exception to the con- 
tinuity, where a little brook, finding its way to the 
sea, forms a narrow cove. 

The bounding hill-range, which on the left of the 
cove attains no great elevation, rises on the right into 
a large, somewhat conical hill, known as the Cap- 
stone. It is an enormous mass of shale, in some 
parts very friable and rotten ; in others more com- 
pact, wdth occasional narrow veins of wdiite quartz 
running through it. The upper and inner portions 
are covered with turf, and afi*ord pasturage for a few 
sure-footed sheep that hang and climb with uncon- 


scious security in places where a false step would 
plunge tliem lieadlong. But in other parts, and 
especially on the side that overlooks the little cove of 
Wildersmouth, the sides are awfully perpendicular 
and even projecting, and the hroad faces of the grey 
rock are here particularly majestic and picturesque. 
With considerahle lahour, availing itself skilfully of 
the natural facilities of the rock, a broad road has been 
scarped round the seaward-side of the hill, extending 
from the hack of "Wildersmouth round to the eastern 
extremity, and sending off branch roads in zigzag 
directions, by which the lofty summit may be gained. 
To a new-comer these tracks seem not a little dan- 
gerous, for though they are guarded by low parapets 
here and there, they are everywhere so steep, often so 
slippery, and in some points approach so close to the 
yawning edge of the perpendicular precipice, that the 
blood beats with a quickened energy as we ascend, 
especially if we are accompanied by children. But a 
few weeks' residence rubs ofl' the edge of this sensi- 
tiveness, and we wonder after a little while that we 
could have associated danger with what appears so 
commonplace a matter. 

But no frequency of repetition avails to prevent our 
appreciation of the beauty and interest of this charm- 
ing promenade. The crowds of persons who frequent 
it sufficiently proclaim its power to please. On a 
beautiful summer evening we may see the visitors not 
only thronging the walks, and filling the comfortable 
seats that have been let in so numerously into the 
solid rock, but studding the steep sides from the 
summit to the water's edge, on ledges, and points, and 


slippery projections, wherever there is standing room. 
And truly this bold headland commands some noble 
views. To see the sun set on such a calm evening as 
I have mentioned is very fine : the clouds piled, like 
mountain upon mountain, about the horizon, all 
brilliant as he sinks among them, like an oriental 
monarch into his bed of gold and gems ; and then, 
having hidden his person from our view, proclaiming 
who is behind by the gilded edges, almost too bright 
to gaze on, that fringe them ; the broad expanse of 
blue water just broken into a ripple by the breath of 
the western breeze, awakened as the sun goes down, 
and reflecting the glowing radiance of the sky, like a 
great causeway of light reaching across its bosom 
from the spectator to the horizon: — this surely is a 
maafnificent siofht, behold it where and when we mav : 
and it is seen to unusual advantage from the elevated 
promenade of Capstone Hill. The spectators linger 
on the sight, every face turned towards the west ; 
though the glittering splendour has changed to rich 
hues of crimson and orange, and these in their turn 
have faded to a ruddy brown hue, that is already 
leaving the western quarter and creeping round to- 
wards the north, and will not quite leave the horizon 
all through the night, until it brightens in the eastern 
sky with the rays of morning. 

On a clear sunny day it is very pleasant to wind 
along the rocky path, resting at intervals on the con- 
venient seats, or pausing to enjoy the beauties pre- 
sented by different points of view. As we ascend the 
western side, we may stand at the parapet and look 
over the precipice on the beach of Wildersmouth 


below. Perhaps the tide is out, and the long ledges 
of rock are exposed, alternating with little spots of 
shingle. The bathing machines are drawn down to 
the water's edge, and the singularly-attired priestesses 
of the bath are carrying out little girls in flannel 
gowns, and diicldng them in the wave. Ladies are 
speckling the grey rocks with their gay dresses and 
parasols as they sit in the sun, and merry children 
are sailing their tiny boats in the pools, or digging 
up the pebbles with their toy-spades. 

We proceed, and gradually open the dark, iron- 
bound coast of North Devon, as far at least as the 
Bull point, a bluff promontory, black and frowning, 
that projects far into the sea. Far out upon the horizon 
appears Lundy Island, like a band of blue ribbon, 
dark and palpable. As we wend farther round, we 
descry Worms Head, a distant mountain, the termi- 
nating point of a long line of coast, stretching away 
upon the northern horizon. This is the opposite side 
of the Bristol Channel, and those hills that w^e can 
just discern, rising range beyond range, are the 
mountains of South Wales. 

But if we turn our eyes to the scene round about, 
we shall find much to admire. The varying effects 
of light and shadow on these great breadths of angu- 
lar rock ; the inclination of their strata, at an angle 
of 45' to the horizon ; the fissures that run directly 
across these, some filled with the quartz deposits, 
others gaping ; the greasy gleam of the shale in some 
places, the singular light-bay tint in others that 
makes one think the sun's rays are falling on the 
spot and are clouded elsewhere, — may all claim a 


passing notice. Or we may find objects of interest 
in the plants, that leave not even our rocky cliff's 
quite barren. In spring, and lingering on even into 
early summer, sweet and delicate tufts of primroses 
grow in profusion on the sloping turf, and in the 
hollows and clefts. The fleshy, glossy leaves of the 
scurvy-grass, hot and pungent, are seen in many 
spots, and the tufts of thrift are gay everywhere. The 
kidney-vetch, varying from light-yellow to cream- 
white, the bii^d's-foot lotus, and the bladder-campion, 
are very abundant ; samphire adorns the precipitous 
sides with bunches of dark-green succulent leaves, 
flowering late in the season; curiously-cut leaves of 
the buckhorn plantain form radiating crowns of foliage 
over the minor clefts ; and ivy al] the year round 
spreads an ample drapery of graceful foliage over the 
otherwise bare rock, especially in those aspects where 
the rays of the sun can seldom reach, and where 
flowers scarcely love to grow. 

If we trace our way up one of the winding paths 
to the very summit, we shall be rewarded by the wide 
grandeur of the view. At one point a corner of the 
track comes to the very verge of the cliff*, and here a 
short iron rail is placed as a guard. Few would pass 
this without a moment's gaze of admiration at the 
precipice, a hundred and fifty feet in height, and 
perfectly perpendicular, that is just over against us, 
or a glance at Wildersmouth far beneath. The 
wheat-ear twits and flies over the edges of the cliff" as 
we disturb him, and the rock-pipit may be seen 
perched on some projecting rock; while at the top 
numerous agile wagtails are running over the breezy 


down among tlie sheep that are grazing and bleating 

And here we are at the summit, nearly three hun- 
dred feet above the level of the sea. A flag-staff has 
been rigged on this point, and around the knot of rock 
on which it stands there are seats facing various 
directions. Seaward the view embraces the coasts 
already mentioned, but the horizon is of course more 
distant, and the range of sight more ample. The 
numbers of craft of all sorts, continually coming and 
going, add much to the interest of this scene. If we 
turn and look inland, a prospect equally beautiful, 
but of very different character demands admiration. 
From the w^est round by the south to the east a 
verdant amphitheatre extends, bounded by hills of 
various form and elevation, and diversified with woods 
and cultivated fields. The peaks called the Torrs, 
the rounded elevated down of Langley Cleve, and a 
curious, somewhat isolated conical peak known as 
Carn Top, that always reminds me of Mount Tabor, 
are the leading eminences to the west and south-west. 
Then gentle slopes sweep away along the south line, 
with the town, spread out as in a map, occupying the 
bottom. To the eastward the noble mountain-mass 
of Hillsborough, presenting a bluff headland to the 
sea. nearly five hundred feet in height, and Ptillage 
Point, running out in a long sharp spit behind it, 
terminate the view ; but between us and the former 
is the harbour of Ilfracombe, with its shipping and 
fishing craft, and perhaps a steamer lying at the pier; 
and Lantern Hill, another almost isolated peak of 
inferior elevation, crowned by its ancient lighthouse. 


and facing its opposite neighbour the giant Hills- 
borough, the joint guardians of the harbour mouth. 
And thus we have gazed over a semicircle, and are 
brought round to' the channel again. 

If now we descend to the principal promenade, 
and stand on that side which faces the Welsh coast, 
there stretches down from our feet to the water's edge 
a rough, irregular slope of rock about fifty feet in 
perpendicular height, broken into broad shelves and 
wall-like descents, and cleft with deep narrow chasms, 
up which the sea shoots and boils with a tremendous 
uproar. Steps rudely cut in the rock give easy access 
to the ledges at different elevations, and on fine sunny 
days these are favourite spots with the ladies, who 
scramble down and seat themselves with their books 
or their netting on the little rocky perches by the 
hour together. When there is a heavy swell in from 
the north or west, these stations are in more than 
wonted demand ; for the incoming sea rushing upon 
the stony barrier, dashing up to a great height in 
impotent fury, and breaking into a cloud of spray and 
foam that sprinkles the beholders even far up on the 
heights, is a sight well worth seeing. 


The little bay that lies between Capstone and the 
Kunnacleaves is scarcely less attractive as a place of 
resort than the promenade of the former hill by which 
it is overlooked. A tiny brook, dignified however 


with a proper narae, the Wilder, discharges itself here 
after a long brawling course through the upper part 
of the town, and imparts to the cove itself an 
appellation, familiar to the ear of every one who 
has visited Ilfracombe, — Wildersmouth. Before the 
Tunnels were pierced through the Runnacleaves, now 
affording access to the bathing pools at Crewkhorne, 
this cove was the only bathing place available, — in- 
deed the only access to the shore. And still it is a 
favourite lounge, especially when the tide is out. 
There are great masses of rock, sloping upward from 
the land-side, but projecting in a sharp angle over the 
sea, scattered everywhere about the cove, and up these 
inclined planes visitors climb, ladies as well as gen- 
tlemen, and sit or lie at length by the hour together, 
in the pleasant sun, tempered by the breeze of sum- 
mer. Some may be seen collecting from the rocks 
the adhering limpets, or the tiny periwinkles of va- 
rious hues, — white, green, orange, — that lie by scores 
in the fissures, or gazing with curious eyes on the 
glossy purple Anemones, that crowd the rocks between 
tide-marks. And later in the season, the heaps of 
sea-weeds washed ashore by autumnal gales afford an 
endless subject of interest to collectors. 

The sunny cove seems the very abode of mirth and 
recreation ; and yet it has been the scene of dire 
disaster and heart-breaking sorrow. 

Some years ago a party of nine ladies went down 
to the rocks at Wildersmouth, at the part below the 
Capstone, which is rather secluded by means of the 
more than usually large masses of rock that rise 
there. One of the ladies was the aunt of another, the 


latter a little girl, whose parents were in India. The 
child was to be bathed, but the sea was high, and she 
did not like it. When she had been dipped twice, 
she begged that it might suffice, but all protested that 
she must have her full allowance of three dips. The 
aunt accordingly plunged her a third time, but at 
that instant a heavy wave coming in took the child 
out of the grasp of her relative, and bore her back 
beyond reach. The tide was setting down, and the 
party had the agony of seeing their little companion 
carried rapidly away across the mouth of the cove 
towards the Tunnel rocks. 

A young man, a relative, I believe, of one of the 
ladies, instantly stripped and swam after the child, 
who still floated. He succeeded in catching her, but 
so fast had the tide swept her down, that he had to 
land on the Tunnel side of the cove, and then to 
climb the precipitous cliffs with his helpless burden 
in one arm. She was found, however, to be quite 
dead, anc^no appliances could restore her. 

The aunt was like a maniac ; crying and tear- 
ing her hair in distraction. They put her into 
one of the bathing machines until the first paroxysm 
of her grief had exhausted itself; but she never reco- 
vered the sliock. She used long afterwards to come 
down to the fatal spot, and gaze out upon the sea in 
hopeless and speechless melancholy, a melancholy 
that never left her. 

To complete the sad story, the parents of the child, 
who had not heard of the event, were returning from 
India shortly after, when the ship was ^vrecked, and 
they too were both drowned. 



The most obvious character of this fine species lies 
in its large and numerous warts. These are not con- 
tractile, or otherwise changeable in appearance, and 
therefore are always appreciable. They are well- 
defined, protuberant, round or oval, of considerable 
size on the upper part, but diminish regularly towards 
the base : they are arranged in about 30 longitudinal 
series, which of course diverge from the centre when the 
animal is contracted ; between some of the principal 
series there are other smaller rows, not included in 
the above number. Each principal series contains about 
twenty-two warts. Six of the rows are white, and these 
are disposed symmetrically, so as to form a white star 
on the summit. Between every two white rows, are 
from three to five rows of an ashy grey, with dark 
grey centres. The ground colour is delicate rose-pink 
or carnation at the base, gradually merging into a 
reddish-grey between the thickly-set warts. The re- 
semblance which the Actinia, in this condition, with 
its radiating lines of warts, bears to the common Sea 
Urchin denuded of its spines, is singularly close and 
striking. (Plate YIII. fig. 1.) 

The tentacles are about fifty in number, arranged in 
three or four imperfect circles. They increase in size 
from without, the innermost range being largest : 
they are conical, obtusely pointed, and more or less 
bent in a sigmoid curve, like the branches of a can- 
delabrum. Their colour is a pellucid olive on the 
exterior side, unspotted, but marked across the inner 
side with about eight transverse oval bands of white. 

Fiai^ Yin 

PM.(rOsse del 

initd hyMidbnaiukl &yiaiton. 




reaching about half-round. (Fig. 4.) These bands 
are very characteristic ; they are perfectly well-defined 
and contrast strongly with the olive ground, which 
approaches to black on this side : some of the bands 
are occasionally divided into two narrower ones by a 
crossing dark line : they are not set at quite regular 
intervals, nor are they of equal breadth. The inner- 
most two rows of tentacles, without losing the olive 
and white hues which distinguish the others, are suf- 
fused with a rich purple glow, which greatly adds to 
the beauty of the animal. 

The oral disk is sometimes of a fine sienna-bro^Ti, 
marked with bands of blueish gray, proceeding from 
the base of the inmost tentacles, and tapering to a 
point at the mouth, towards which they converge. 
The brown hue of the disk becomes yellow-olive, or 
a fine green, immediately around the mouth, which is 
prominent. The lips are wrinkled, whitish, marked 
at the two opposite points of the long diameter with a 
tubercle, the summit of which is rose-red ; this is 
constant ; the tubercle is the termination of a ridge 
proceeding from the corresponding tentacle on each 
side. The disk is more generally variegated in a pretty 
manner with black, scarlet, fawn-colour, green and 
white, the hues arranged in divergent stripes, and 
running out between the bases of the inmost tentacles 
in a starry pattern. (Figs. 2 and 3.) 

My largest specimen was ordinarily, when contract- 
ed, a hemisphere of Ij inch in diameter, but when 
much annoyed it would shrink to the dimensions of a 
cherry. When expanded it was about two inches in 
diameter, and about one inch high. In the darkness, 



whether of night or of a closet, it would presently- 
elongate itself to ahout two inches in height, the 
thickness being consequently diminished to about 
half an inch. Whether the tentacles were expanded 
or concealed, this curious habit of elongation was 
almost invariably practised in the dark. Some other 
Actiniae have the same habit. 

I find several, mostly of small size, in the crevices 
of the rocks near low water around the bathing pools. 
They are generally enveloped in small gravel, from 
which, if closed, their six-fold star appears prettily con- 
spicuous. One that I brought home produced a 
single young in the night, which I found in the morn- 
ing adhering to the bottom of the vessel beside its 
parent. It is comparatively large, being about one 
fourth of the diameter of the mother ; — there are only 
twelve tentacles in a single row, but with a tendency 
to serial arrangement, for the alternate ones are much 
smaller than the rest. It is interesting to see the 
characteristic colouring distinctly shown in this new- 
bom young : the tentacles in particular have the 
bands across the upper surface as numerous, as vivid, 
and as well-defined, as in any adult. Probably twelve 
tentacles is the normal number of the infant Actinia 
in all species, constituting the inner row. In a week 
or two other tentacles begin to appear, not in a regular 
series, but here and there from between the bases of 
those already formed. 

There seems a greater readiness in this species to 
produce young in captivity than in any other that I 
have kept. Most of the specimens in my vessels have 


produced ; some of them twice. One young at a time 
seems the rule, though I should not have expected so 
limited a birth : it is extruded from the mouth of the 
parent (as I conjecture, for I have not witnessed the 
parturition) and dropping on the bottom, attaches it- 
self close by her side, or not far off, and maintains its 
position pretty pertinaciously, expanding its star-like 
disk for prey, and greedily seizing and devouring it 
when offered ; even though it should be so large as to 
swell the body up to twice its former dimensions. 

The tentacles on being subjected to pressure display 
a great number of filiferous capsules (Fig. 5) which 
are thrown off in multitudes with the mucus pressed 
off. They are very minute, almost linear, about j^ob^h. 
inch in length. The extruded thread reaches to 
about ^th inch : no barbs were discernible on it. 


A singular marine spider fPhoxichilnsJ looking like 
a skeleton, throws about its long legs, and crawls 
slowly over the parasitic Crisice &c. from the roots 
of LaminaricR. A small one found to day carried 
under it four globose masses of eggs, altogether much 
wider than its body. They were difficult to detach, 
being firmly held by the first pair of feet, which are 
slenderer than the rest and bent under : the q^^ masses 
were of a flesh-colour, and under the microscope were 
full of minute perfectly globular opaque ova. 


May 22nd. — I again visited Watermouth and 


Smallmoutli. The Primrose still lingers in the lane 
leading up from Hele, but is almost replaced by the 
greater Stitchwort, and the red Campion ; the pretty 
Milkwort is sprawling profusely over the banks, with its 
heads of delicate pink blossoms ; the ramping Fumi- 
tory, with flowers more than usually rich in colour, 
occurs, and even the spikes of the common Bugle are 
attractive to the eye, though the plant is somewhat 
coarse on examination. In the little grove above 
Watermouth, the wild Hyacinth is still profuse, and 
the purple Orchis is abundant, and many of its spikes 
particularly fine, both in the size and number of their 
constituent blossoms. In a pond, the Water- crowfoot 
was filling the margins with its many- split leaves, and 
its unpretending little white flowers. At the shore I 
found under a stone a species of A?^emcola, an uncouth 
creature, of a deep black hue, or rather what a tailor 
would call "invisible green." It is about six inches 
long, and 5- inch in greatest thickness, which is nearest 
the head, but not abruptly. The whole is divided 
into 28 segments, each consisting of 6 annuli, of which 
the foremost on each segment is stouter, and preceded 
by a deeper incision than the rest. The 16 posterior 
segments are furnished with branchial tufts, and pen- 
cils of bristles ; the former are two on each large 
annulus, on the dorsal aspect ; they are protrusile, and 
consist of a great number of short filaments, incurved, 
which have the power of independent motion. When I 
first examined it, these little filaments were freely 
pushed out and retracted, and moved with a sort of 
grasping action; but after a day or two they were 
still. They were largest near the tail, gradually dimin- 


isliing to tlie middle of the body. On the outer side 
of each tuft is a small tentacle, or rather a fleshy 
tubular sheath, fi'om which issues at will a flat pencil 
of fine bristles, arranged transversely to the line of 
the animal : they point upwards and slightly outwards. 
The bristles are very fine and gradually tapering to a 
point ; they are plain, except near the tip, where they 
are clothed with the most delicate barbules, which 
however are closely appressed. These pencils of bris- 
tles do not cease with the branchial tufts, but are 
continued on every great annulus to the head. The 
mouth is constantly being everted and retracted ; in 
the former process a trumpet-shaped mouth is unfold- 
ed, the edges and interior of which are set with dense 
papillae ; sometimes, especially after a day's captivity, 
this mouth is evolved to a still greater extent, so as to 
project the interior itself in a convex or almost globu- 
lar form, which assumes a pellucid appearance, and a 
pale-brown hue. The rings of the body are occasion- 
ally adorned with a blue iridescence ; they are longitu- 
dinally wrinkled, and hence there is a sort of reticulation 
on the animal. When I first touched it, it discharged 
(I think from the tufts) a yellow fluid, which strongly 
stained my fingers : and on being kept in a saucer of 
clean sea- water, I found the latter in 24 hours tinged 
with olive ; as was the water, with which I replaced it, 
the following day. 

I subsequently found another specimen of this 
animal in similar circumstances. The colouring fluid 
was poured out in tliis case much more profusely. I 
stained some writing paper with it ; the tint was at 
first a full greenish-yellow, but after a day or two it 


changed to a purplish-brown, quite permanent, neither 
alterable with water nor with time. The specimens 
came near to Arenicola hranchialis of Aud. et M. Edw., 
but did not quite agree with the characters given to 
the species by those zoologists. 


At the water's edge at the outer base of the Cap- 
stone at low water, spring-tide, I was looking about 
for Actinias, when peering into a hole I saw a fine 
Crab, not of the very largest, but still of very nice 
table dimensions. I poked in my arm and took hold 
of him, and though he made vigorous efforts to hold 
fast the angles and notches of his cave with his sharp 
toes, I pulled him out and carried him home. I 
I noticed that there came out with him the claw of a 
crab of similar size, but quite soft, which, ] supposed, 
might have been either carried in there by my gentle- 
man to eat, or accidentally washed, in. After I had 
got him out, for it was a male, I looked in and saw 
another at the bottom of the hole, which appeared to 
me considerably smaller. I debated whether I should 
essay this one also, but reflected that I could only eat 
one at a supper, and that moderation in luxuries is 
becoming ; " So," said I, " friend Crab, stay there till 
next time ; I may find you here again on some other 
auspicious morning." When I arrived at home, how- 
ever, I discovered that I had left my pocket-knife at 
the mouth of the crab-hole ; a fine strong-bladed 
implement, that had already stood me in good stead 
on several occasions, cutting holes for my footsteps 


in the soft rock in climbing up the precipice, when 
embayed by the tide, and so forth. I felt loth to 
part with my old knife, and therefore at once put on 
my hat, running hard for fear the tide, which had 
already turned, might be too high. I got to the place, 
however, just in time, found my knife, and then took 
another peep at the Crab. It had not moved, and 
thinking that if I could not eat it myself I might ask 
my neighbour's acceptance of it, I drew it out with my 
fingers, as I had done with the former. But lo ! it was 
a soft Crab ; the shell being of the consistency of wet 
parchment, and the colours (all except those of the 
carapace) being pale. It was a female too, without 
any sign of spawn, and had lost one claw ; strange ! 
that I had not thought of connecting the soft claw 
that I had di'awn out before, with this Crab that I 
saw at the bottom. But I carefully put the helpless 
creature into the hole again, and saw that it settled 
its legs and body comfortably in its old quarters ; 
and there I left it : for our Crab is worthless for the 
table in this condition, unlike the Land Crabs of the 
West Indies, which are esteemed peculiarly delicate 
in their soft state. 

What then are we to infer from this association ? 
Do the common Crabs live in pairs ? and does one 
keep guard at the mouth of tlaeir cavern, while its 
consort is undergoing its change of skin ? If this 
is the case, it is a pretty trait of cancrine character, 
and one not unworthy of their acute instinct and 
sagacity in other respects. The male displayed no 
appearance of the moult, its coat being of a shelly 
hardness. I have no doubt that the claw of its mate 


was unintentionally torn oif, in its efforts to grasp 
some hold when resisting my tugs in dragging him 


A three miles' walk to the westward brings the 
pedestrian to a romantic little spot called Lee. The 
road lies over the downs, along the margins of those 
very precipitous cliffs that so characterize the coast 
hereabout. It does not present any unusual features, 
to be sure, in a country where grandeur and variety of 
scenery are the rule, but even if these were wanting, 
green lanes and downs, hedges covered with flowers, 
the glittering insects and the singing birds, the surge 
of the sea far below, the sun, and the breeze, would 
make any walk enjoyable at this season. Hither 
then, basket in hand, I strolled, to discover what the 
shore might afford me of the minuter works of God, 
which are so eminently worthy of being studied, so 
eminently calculated to afford the contemplative mind 
food for wonder, delight, and meditation, though nine 
hundred and ninety-nine out of every thousand of 
mankind never bestow a thought upon them, and even 
the great bulk of those who seek recreation by the sea 
side, tread them beneath their feet in the most abso- 
lute unconsciousness of their very existence. 

Lee is the opening of a beautiful valley, which 
bends to the right as you look at it from the sea. 
The bottom is chiefly occupied by meadows, to whose 
carpeted surface the late rains had imparted the 
most brilliant verdure. The hedge-rows are profusely 


planted with elms and other trees, which, whatever 
may he thought of their utility in husbandry, do 
certainly improve the landscape wonderfully, affording 
the finest contrasts between their dark masses of 
foliage, and the tender green of the fields, as bright 
as an emerald in the sunlight, seen in peeps between 
them. A few farms and villas, embowered in orchards 
and gardens, constitute the hamlet of Lee, and being 
scattered over the bottom and along the slopes are 
very picturesque. The vaUey rises a little inward, 
and is presently lost to view by bending round to the 
right, where it is shut in by the steep rounded hill 
that forms that side. The whole of this hill, from its 
base to its lofty summit, is covered with wood, while 
the hill on the opposite side, equally lofty and equally 
steep, is an open down, varied only by a few scattered 
clumps of furze. A little stream turns the huge wheel 
of a mill at high-water mark ; then spreads itself over 
the sand and shingle in broad shallow sheets rather 
than channels, till it finds the receded tide. The 
character of the rocks is rather peculiar : around 
on either side of the cove there are the same sharp 
rugged upslanting ridges and pinnacles as elsewhere, 
and some pretty little deep nooks are formed in the 
high rocks on the western side, enclosing sloping 
beaches of sand, entirely dry at low water but covered 
by the flood-tide. The whole lower part of the cove 
itself, however, that is, all between tide-marks, consists 
of the usual rocks, grey friable slate, cut off as it were 
to one level, about three or four feet above the shingle, 
and these intersected by a thousand irregular channels, 
and now and then interrupted by broad areas of sand 


and gravel. At the extreme of low water (it was 
spring- tide), the points where these channels, (the 
drainage of the sea-water from the weed-covered rocks, 
mingled with the stream from the land) debouched 
into the sea, were strewn with loose stones and 
boulders of various sizes, partly embedded in the 
deposit of mud which this formation so copiously 
supplies ; for the ease with which the substance of 
this grey slate is abraded by the action of the waves 
covers the bottom with a fine whitish slimy mud, 
very unpleasant to the feel, and ever ready to be 
stirred up when a little sea is on. The water here 
therefore scarcely ever has the brilliant clearness 
which characterizes it among the limestones and 
sandstones of South Devon. 

Stones found in such circumstances afford a good 
hunting ground for the naturalist; fishes, Crustacea, 
annehdes, and star-fishes in particular haunt under 
their shelter, and an hour's turning will, unless liis 
fortune be unusually inauspicious, yield him material 
for days' study. Beneath one of these stones I found 
a specimen of our smallest native Pipe-fish, which 
Mr. Yarrell has described under the name of the Worm 
Pipe-fish (Syngnathus lumhriciformis J . It is a 
much more beautiful little creature than you might 
suppose from either the figure or the description of 
that eminent zoologist, who probably has had no 
opportunity of seeing its living grace and elegance. 
Mr. Yarrell simply says that its " colour is dark olivQ 
green" ; this however very imperfectly expresses its 
various tints, a want which I will endeavour to supply 
with the httle beauty before my eyes ; premising that 


it is not very easy to describe in detail an agile 
creature that is every moment gliding in and out 
among the sea- weeds in its vase. (See Plate VIII. 
rigs. 6 and 7.) The general hue of the body is a 
warm yellow oKve, becoming silvery grey on the under 
part of the lengthened . tail, from the vent backward. 
The sides of the head and neck are profusely marbled 
with conspicuous spots of pure white, of varying form 
and size, the effect of which is heightened by each 
being surrounded by a border of black ; on each side 
of the cro^Ti also there passes off from behind the eye 
to the occiput, an interrupted streak of white, bordered 
below with black. A flush of red pui*ple suffuses the 
middle of the operculum, covering without concealing 
the spots and clouds of that part. Between the gills 
and the vent there are numerous rows of white dots, 
arranged perpendicularly on each side of the body at 
regular intervals ; these doubtless mark the plates of 
the mailed covering, a row to a plate, but whether 
they are placed in the middle or at either edge of the 
plate, I cannot say, for all my efforts will not avail to 
make out the Limits of the plates in the living fish ; 
the contour of the body is perfectly smooth and flow- 
ing, not cylindrical, but compressed and forming an 
edge on the back and on the belly. Scattered specks 
of white lie between the perpendicular rows. Behind 
the vent the body is perceptibly constricted between 
the plates, and this alternate swelling and constriction 
extends to within half an inch of the extremity of the 
tail ; the remainder being abruptly attenuated and 
smooth. Each of the plates on the tail is marked at 
each edge of the under side, by a roundish well- 


defined white spot, succeeded by one of black ; and 
the whole of this part, which glistens with a lustre like 
that of tin-foil, is sprinkled with numerous irregular 
white and black spots. The eye is very beautiful ; it 
is particularly large, full, and glassy ; the pupil is 
encircled by a fine ring of golden red, and the iris is 
marked with alternate divergent bands of grey and 
brown. The fin-rays are simple, and, with the mem- 
brane, which is very subtle, are studded with very 
minute olive specks, except in diagonal spots and 
bands of clear space. 

The muzzle is abruptly narrowed immediately before 
the eyes (looking at it vertically), and widens a little 
towards the tip : the mouth opens, as in other Pipe- 
fishes, perpendicularly. The nostrils form minute 
projecting warts. The line of the belly is gently 
curved to the vent, from which point the body is much 
more slender, both laterally and ventrally. The tail 
is compressed, and terminates in a flattened point. I 
observed a curious bladder-like tumour, under the 
throat, just behind the gill- covers, but whether it is 
normal or accidental I cannot say. 

In captivity the manners of this pretty little fish 
are amusing'" and engaging. Its beautiful eyes move 
independently of each other, which gives a most 
curious eff'ect as you watch its little face through a 
lens ; one eye being directed towards your face, with 
a quick glance of apparent intelligence, while the other 
is either at rest, or thrown hither and thither at various 
other objects. I was strongly reminded of that strange 
reptile, the Chameleon. 

Another point of resemblance to that animal our 


little Pipe-fish presents in the prehensile character of 
its tail. It curves just the tip of this organ laterally 
round the stem or frond of some sea-weed, and holds 
on by this half-inch or so, while the rest of its body 
roves to and fro, elevating and depressing the head 
and foreparts, and throwing the body into the most 
graceful curves. The immediateness, with which the 
prehensile action followed contact of the part with 
any object, reminded me of what I have observed in 
the tails of the American Monkeys, in which the 
slightest and most accidental touch of the tail-tip 
instantly excites the grasping action. Perhaps it is 
in a measure involuntary. 

All the motions of the Pipe-fish manifest much 
intelligence. It is a timid little thing, retiring from 
the side of the glass at which it had been lying, when 
one approaches, and hiding under the shadow of the 
sea-w^eeds, which I have put in both to afl^ord it shel 
ter, and also to supply food in the numerous animal- 
cules that inhabit these marine plants. Then it 
cautiously glides among their bushy fronds, and from 
under their shelter peeps with its brilliant eyes at the 
intruder, as if wondering what he can be, drawing 
back gently on any alarming motion. It was only 
by taking my opportunity, presenting my pocket lens, 
and approaching my face to the side of the glass very 
slowly and cautiously, that I could examine it suffi- 
ciently for the purposes of delineation and de- 

In swimming it is constantly throwing its body 
into elegant contortions and undulations : often it 
hangs nearly perpendicular, with the tail near the sur- 



face, and the head near the bottom of the glass, only- 
bent upwards with a sudden curve : now and then it 
butts against the side of the vessel, or even against 
the bottom, with reiterated blows of its nose as if it 
could not make out why it should not go forward 
where it can see no impediment. Now it twists 
about as if it would tie its body into a love-knot ; then 
hangs motionless in some one of the '^ lines of beau- 
ty " in which it has accidentally paused ; its air- 
bladder conspicuous as a pellucid oblong spot about 
halfway between the nose and the vent, as you look 
at its body between your eye and the light ; and then if 
you apply your lens carefully you will see the constant 
action of the gill-covers, and the periodical currents 
of water shot forth behind in two forcible jets, from 
a minute orifice on each side, just above the operculum 
edge. The little fin that rides on the middle of the 
back, so filmy as to be scarcely noticeable while un- 
moved, is constantly, while the fish is swimming, and 
at fi'equent intervals while it is at rest, fluttered with 
a rapid vibration, like that of the gauzy wing of an 
insect. This is a very charming action. 

My specimen is about five inches long, which is the 
size given by Mr. Yarrell as that of adult age ; but I 
do not see any trace of ova, or of the pouch proper 
to the male ; it is probable it is a female. 

It does not appear to be nocturnal in its activity : 
it ordinarily lies quiet, if undisturbed, and concealed 
among the more bushy of the sea- weeds, for the 
gieatest portion of its time, but usually comes forth 
once or twice in the day for a half-hour's play, when 
it swims about in contortions in the manner I have 


described. I think I have observed that the afternoon 
is a favourite season for these exercises ; not, how- 
ever, that it adheres with any regularity to time. 

June 2Srd. — I have had my little Pipe-fish now 
nearly three weeks. The terminal portion of the tail, 
that I mentioned above as abruptly attenuated, flat- 
tened, and smooth, has grown considerably : it was at 
first not quite half-an-inch in length, it is now nearly 
an inch : the appearance is exactly like that of a 
renewed tail, like that of a Lizard for instance. But 
there is another change in my little captive, that is 
less pleasing. The bladder-like tamour beneath the 
throat has increased, and spread, so that above, on the 
sides, and below, all about the body, the fish is nearly 
covered with large patches of bladders, many of them 
contiguous to each other, evidently filled with water 
or air. It is probably air ; for the eff'ect is to float 
the fish on the surface ; and it is only by muscular 
energy in swimming that it can get down again 
when once at the top ; and when among the weeds 
it is fain to take hold with its prehensile tail to keep 
itself there. It is evidently a disease ; analogous, one 
might say, considering the difi'erence of the elements 
in which we respectively live, to the dropsy among 
ourselves. I endeavoured to tap some of the largest 
bladders with a needle, and fancied it felt some relief ; 
but I was afraid to attempt much at this kind of 
chirurgery, lest I might be found guilty by a jury of 
fishes of the crime of fish-slaughter. What little I 
did, however, seemed to do good, for the next day 
many of the bladders had disappeared, but only to 
return in greater numbers and size than ever. The 


poor little fish now could only float at the surface ; 
and as that could not last long, I resolved to attempt 
a more extensive puncturing. I accordingly took it 
into my fingers, and pierced the bladders here and 
there in various parts of the body, and then returned 
it to the water. At first I was afraid I had killed it 
by keeping it out of water, though only for so brief a 
period as a few minutes (certainly not more than two 
or three); for it floated belly uppermost, and appeared 
much exhausted, but gradually recovered. Though 
it did not appear immediately that the bladders com- 
municated with each other, yet they certainly did, for 
the next day they had greatly diminished, and in a 
few days they had entirely disappeared ; the skin had 
healed and become smooth and healthy, and the little 
creature was able to enjoy itself again. 

July Qth. — I found my pet dead, on my return after 
a week's absence from home ; it had apparently been 
dead about three or four days ; so that it has lived in 
captivity rather more than four weeks. 

The difficulty of delineating with accuracy objects 
that can be defined only with microscopic powers 
would hardly be imagined by those who have never 
attempted it. In the case of this little fish, every 
glance at its form or colours, in order to transmit 
them to the paper, was taken through a triple pocket- 
lens, which had to be exchanged for the pencil at 
each stroke. The focus of this glass was about half 
an inch, but the fish was swimming freely in a large 
glass vase five inches wide ; so that it was only when 
it spontaneously approached close to the side of the 
transparent vessel, that I could get a sight. It was, 


of course, of no use to try to 'j)ush it to the required 
spot; the attempt only alarmed the little creature, and 
made it dart hither and thither ; I could only wait 
patiently its wayward will. When it came, perhaps 
it would be with the wrong side presented towards 
me, or the part which I wanted would be turned to 
one side, or in some wav altered from its former 
position. And very often indeed, just as I had got 
my glass to the focus, and my eye to tlie glass, after wait- 
ing perhaps for a quarter of an hour, — before I could 
get a glance with sufficient distinctness to impress an 
image on mv eve for delineation, the fish would dart 
over to the other side, and leave me to exercise 
patience for another quarter. 

This is the perpetual experience of those who draw 
living animals with the microscope. The camera 
liicida is an admirable aid for motionless forms, but it 
is powerless for such as are agile and fitful. Nor is 
the case of those minute creatures that are view^ed 
through the compound microscope at all better than 
that of my Pipe-fish watched through a lens held in 
the fingers. In order to see it to advantage, you must 
allow your Zoophyte or Annelide space sufficient to 
expand or move in ; wdien, if it be a lively species, 
probably, just as you have got it steady enough to 
delineate the first two or three lines, away it suddenly 
starts, its position is quite changed, the relation of its 
parts to your eye is altered, or perhaps it shoots clean 
off, out of the field of vision. 


Rock-pools— Their Abundance — Southey's Description — Its truth 
to Nature — Their Loveliness — Chondrus — Its brilliant Reflec- 
tions — The branching Coryne — A Parasite — A Beautiful 
Sea- weed — Structure of the Zoophyte — Origin of its name — 
Tentacles — Their Structure — Egg Capsules — Escape of the 
Eggs — The Bird's-head Coralline — Elegant Shape of the Poly- 
pidom -Advantage of studying living Animals — The Cell 
— The Polype — Its Organization — Muscles — Economy in God's 
works — A Populous Stone — Enumeration of its Tenants — 
Reflections — God's Purpose in Creation — The hopeful Future 
— The Sessile Coryne — ^The Belgian Pedicellina — Its Form 
and Structure — Production of its Young — Its Habits — Its 
Affinities — The Slender Pedicellina — Its singular Bulb. 


What a delight it is to scramble among the rough 
rocks that gird this stern iron-bound coast, and peer 
into one after another of the thousand tide-pools that 
lie in their cavities ! They are particularly abundant 
here ; and indeed it is to the peculiar character of 
the rocks, their rugged unevenness, depending upon 
their laminated structure, and the inclination of their 
strata, that we are indebted for the pools, which make 
the coast so rich and tempting a hunting ground to the 
naturalist. I do not wonder that when Southey had 
an opportunity of seeing some of these beautiful quiet 

ROCK-POOLS. . 187 

basins hollowed in the Hving rock, and stocked with 
elegant plants and animals, having all the charm of 
novelty to his eye, — they should have moved his 
poetic fancy, and found more than one place in the 
gorgeous imagery of his oriental romances. Just 
listen to him. 

It was a garden still beyond all price, 
Even yet it was a place of Paradise ; 

^F tP w ^ ^ tJ* tt 

And here were coral-bowers, 
And grots of madrepores, 
And banks of sponge, as soft and fair to eye 
As e'er was mossy bed 
Whereon the wood-nymphs lie 
With languid limbs in summer's sultry hours. 
Here too were living flowers, 
WTiich like a bud compacted. 
Their purple cups contracted. 
And now, in open blossom spread, 
Stretch'd like green anthers many a seeking head. 

And arborets of jointed stone were there. 
And plants of fibres fine as silkworm's thread ; 
Yea, beautiful as mermaid's golden hair 

Upon the waves dispread. 
Others that, like the broad banana growing, 
Rais'd their long wrinkled leaves of purple hue. 
Like streamers wide outflowing. 

(kehama, XVI. 6.) 

A hundred times might you fancy you saw the 
type, the very original of this description, tracing 
line by line, and image by image, the details of the 
picture; and acknowledging, as you proceed, the 
minute truthfulness with which it has been drawn. 
For such is the loveliness of nature in these secluded 
reservoirs, that the accomplished poet, when depicting 
the gorgeous scenes of eastern mythology, scenes the 



wildest and most extravagant that imagination could 
paint, drew not upon the resources of his prolific 
fancy for imagery here, but was well content to jot 
down the simple lineaments of nature, as he saw her 
in plain homely England. 

It is a beautiful and fascinating sight for those who 
have never seen it before, to see the little shrubberies 
of pink coralline, — the "arborets of jointed stone," — 
that fringe these pretty pools. It is a charming sight 
to see the crimson banana-like leaves of the Deles- 
seria waving in their darkest corners ; and the purple 
fibrous tufts of Poll/ sip ho nice and Ceramia, '^fine as 
silkworm's thread." But there are many others which 
give variety and impart beauty to these tide-pools. 
The broad leaves of the Ulva, finer than the finest 
cambric, and of the brightest emerald- green, adorn 
the hollows at the highest level ; while at the lowest 
wave tiny forests of the feathery Ptilota and Dasya^ 
and large leaves, cut into fringes and furbelows, of rosy 
Rhodymenim. All these are lovely to behold, but I think 
I admire as much as any of them, one of the com- 
monest of our marine plants, Chondrus crispiis. It 
occurs in the greatest profusion on this coast, in 
every pool between tide-marks ; and every-where, — 
except in those of the highest level, where constant 
exposure to light dwarfs the plant, and turns it of a 
dull umber-brown tint, — it is elegant in form and 
brilliant in colour. The expanding fan-shaped 
fronds, cut into segments, cut, and cut again, make 
fine bushy tufts in a deep pool, and every segment of 
every frond reflects a flush of the most lustrous azure, 
like that of a tempered sword-blade. Professor 


Harvey, than whom no higher authority can he cited 
on the subject of marine botany, says that this species 
"has been observed to be occasionally iridescent." 
But he has surely not seen it around Ilfracombe ; 
for, with the exception of the stunted fronds that grow 
near high-water, I have never seen it otherwise, and 
I have seen roods upon roods of the plant. This 
iridescence is common to it also around Torquay ; 
it is not lost nor even diminished when the plant is 
kept in an aquarium, for I have specimens that have 
been growing for many weeks in my pans and glass 
vases, and which are as brilliant as when they were 
first procured. 


Peeping about among the pools that lie clear and 
calm in the hollows of the rocks below the Torrs, my 
eye was attracted by a tuft of that feathery sea-weed, 
Ptilota sericea. It is not uncommon, fringing the 
perpendicular sides of the ragged ledges and out- 
cropping strata, near the lowest tide-mark, wherever 
the form of the succeeding ledge allows the water to 
lie in a long, narrow and sharp-bottomed pool. The 
colour of this sea-weed is not particularly attractive, 
for it is of a dull brownish red, and the fronds have 
frequently a ragged appearance ; but if it be carefully 
spread out in a saucer of sea-water and examined, 
there will always be some branches to be found of a 
livelier hue than the rest, and these w^ill best show 
the exquisite plumose structure. Each branchlet 
resembles a tiny feather regularly pinnated ; and if 


examined in a microscope of rather high power, each 
of the ultimate nerves of the pinnation, as well as the 
vanes or pinnules themselves, is seen to be com- 
posed of a single row of red transparent cells, of an 
oblong cylindrical form sometimes swollen in the 
middle, attached to each other end by end, looking 
something like the back-bone of a fish, when all the 
ribs and spines are detached. 

But what attracted me on this tuft of sea-weed 
whose soft feathery branches were hanging from the 
sides of the rock into the calm and dark pool, was a 
slender branching filament that was evidently a para- 
site. I separated the Ptilota with as much of the 
base as I could, and put it into a broad-mouthed 
phial of clean water, I could not wait till I got 
home, but looked out for a dry smooth stone on 
which to sit, pulled out my pocket-lens, and looked at 
it. To my gratification it was a polype that I had 
several times vainly wished to find ; I had no difficulty 
in recognizing its similitude to Mrs Johnston's beau- 
tiful figure of Coryne pusilla in Brit. Zooph. pi. ii. 
(2nd. Edit.); though I think it rather belongs to the 
species distinguished as ramosa. It may possibly 
be the C. glandulosa of Dalyell (An. of Scot. Vol. ii. 
pi. 21) ;— but hardly of pi. 22. 

It was not however, until I could institute a closer 
examination of it at home, that I fully apprehended 
its curious structure or its elegant beauty, and this, by 
the aid of a sketch that I immediately made of its 
microscopic appearance, I will endeavour to convey 
to you. 

The animal as seen by the naked eye looks like a 

r'late. JX. 

r? ^■■•asf dfl 

Frmttd h/HuIlmandil S )i''alton 



very slender brandling plant. (Plate IX. Fig. 1.) It is 
altogether about as thick as fine sewing cotton ; an 
irregularly winding thread creeps along the frond of 
the sea-weed, clinging firmly to it as it goes, yet not 
so tenaciously but that it may be pulled away with- 
out dividing. This creeping root sends off frequent 
rootlets, which crossing each other appear to anasto- 
mose, making a sort of net- work of a few oblong areas. 
Free stalks shoot up here and there from the creeping 
stem, one of which in my specimen is upwards 
of three inches in length : they show a very slight 
disposition to ramification ; but send forth at short 
intervals the polype-branchlets, irregularly on all sides. 
A few of these are compound, one branch let giving 
origin to another from its side. The creeping fibre, 
the stalk, and the branchlets are seen under the 
microscope to be tubular, and the two latter are mark- 
ed throughout their course with close-set rings, or 
false joints, apparently produced by the annular infold- 
ing of a small portion of the integument. (Fig. 2.) The 
tube is of a vellowish-brown colour, sufficientlv trans- 
lucent to reveal a core or central axis of flesh runninsf 
along its centre, and sending off branches into the 
polype-branchlets, from the open tips of which the 
flesh emerges in the form of a thickened oblong head, 
somewhat club-shaped, whence the name Corijne, (from 
xo/jDV'/j, a club) which has been assigned to this 
genus by naturalists. The tube or sheath becomes 
membranous, or I think gelatinous, (like that of some 
Hotifera) at its margin, the ultimate three or four 
rings being evidently soft, scarcely consistent, viscid 
(entangling extraneous matters), almost colourless. 


of undefined outline, and larger than the rest. 
The polype-flesh, which is very slender within the 
tube, enlarges rapidly as it emerges. The club- 
shaped head of the polype is studded with short 
tentacles of curious and beautiful structure. They 
vary much in number on each polype, but the full 
complement appears to be from twenty-five to thirty ; 
they are arranged in somewhat of a whorled manner, 
in four or five whorls, which are, however, (especially 
the lower ones) often irregular and scarcely distinct. 
Four tentacles usually constitute the final whorl ; 
about six the next, the others respectively contain 
seven or eight, and ten or twelve. The tentacles 
spring from the axis with a graceful curve, they are 
rather thick and short, when contracted, but slender 
when elongated, nearly equal in diameter, except at 
the termination, where each is furnished with a glo- 
bose head. This head (See Figs. 3 and 4) is studded 
with minute tubercles on every part, which reflect the 
light, and which viewed by transmitted light are seen 
to be the terminations of numerous oval cells or folli- 
cles set in a divergent manner around the centre. 
Each tubercle is tipped with a minute bristle. The 
neck or body of the tentacle is perfectly transparent, 
pellucid, whitish or nearly colourless, and appears to 
be a tube with thin walls slightly hairy on the surface, 
but containing a colourless thickish axis, freely per- 
meating its centre, marked with delicate parallel 
rings. The globose knobs at the tips of the tenta- . 
cles remind me of the unexpanded blossoms of an 
Acacia : they are generally tinged with pale red, 
and in some polypes, especially terminal ones, they 


are of a fine rose colour, and have an attractive 

The tentacles are endowed witli tlie power of free 
motion, and they frequently throw themselves to and 
fro with considerable energy ; when perfectly at ease 
they are carried projecting at right angles from the 
pol}^e, but are more commonly curved up towards it. 
The whole polype can be also tossed from side to side 
at pleasure. The tentacles are contractile and exten- 
sile in some degree ; for if the animal be taken out of 
water for an instant, and again replaced, these organs 
are found to be shrunk up to less than half of their 
former length. In a few minutes they recover their 

Some of the polype heads are furnished with organs 
of another kind. Among the tentacles, chiefly of the 
lower whorls, are seen one or two oval bodies, about 
twice or thrice as large as a tentacle-head, which are 
attached by short footstalks to the polype-body. They 
are composed of a clear jelly-like granular mass, with 
an oval dark nucleus in the centre, connected with the 
attachment: the nucleus is of an orange or ye] low 
hue, and is coarsely granulated. In some that I kept, 
this dark nucleus became larger until it almost filled 
the interior ; but the death of the animals prevented 
my seeing the full development. These are egg-cap- 
sules, as I afterwards ascertained. 

About the end of August a fine specimen in one 
of my glasses fell under my notice, as having an appear- 
ance which made me think that it had just renewed 
its polype-heads after the old ones had decayed away. 
But in looking at it I saw that one head bore two 


ovigerous vesicles of so large a size that I at once 
isolated the head in hopes of witnessing the develop- 
ment of the embryo. 

The capsules showed the same structure, but as 
one was larger and evidently more developed than the 
other, I selected that one for particular examination. 
(Fig. 5). It was perfectly spherical, with a short 
footstalk, through which a neck of dark brown sub- 
stance connected with the central nucleus, which 
was also dark brown, round or slightly oval, and well- 
defined. This nucleus is not an aggregation of ova, 
as Dr. Johnston seems to suppose (Br. Zooph. 39), 
but a sort of placenta around which many ova are 
arranged, in the manner shown at Fig. 5 (representing 
for clearness' sake a section). These ova fill the 
whole space between the nucleus and the walls of the 
capsule ; they are of a clear, yellowish-brown hue, 
slightly granular in texture, rondo -triangular in form, 
with one angle resting on the placental nucleus. 

I had not been watching the capsule many minutes 
before its gelatinous walls burst at the side the 
farthest from the footstalk; and the ova began to 
issue forth in quick succession, as shewn at Fig. 6. 
It appeared that the elasticity of the walls was the 
immediate cause of their exit, for they were evidently 
pressed out ; and towards the end of the process when 
few remained, the collapse of the walls became quite 
evident, and when the last ovum was excluded, the 
capsule had shrunk up so as to leave scarcely any 
appreciable space between the skin and the nucleus, 
which latter remained unchanged 

Twenty five ova were thus excluded from one cap- 


sule, the process being all over in about a minute 
To my surprise they were neither medusoids, nor 
ciliated planules, but soft gelatinous inanimate eggs, 
closely like those of Kotifera, without the least 
appearance of cilia, or of spontaneous motion (Fig. 7). 
They all sank immediately to the bottom of the glass 
cell, and remained motionless, as far as respects 
change of place. But after several hours I perceived 
that each egg was undergoing a constant change of 
shape, reminding me of those alterations of outline 
seen in the Amceha among Infusoria. Sometimes a 
constriction would appear across one end of an egg, 
which would move towards the middle, cutting it into 
two portions, then be slowly obliterated. Or from 
some point in the circumference little swellings would 
protrude, and these I have reason to think separated, 
for though I did not actually see this done, I saw 
several small globules lying by, of exactly the same 
substance and colour as the ova themselves. Or an 
Ggg would imperceptibly become from round to oval, 
thence to pear-shaped, and thence assume some 
irregular form, and gradually revert to its original 
appearance. These changes were slow in operation, 
but they indicate that the ovum remains soft and 
shell-less, and that there is a principle of volition 
within it. They one by one decomposed. 

THE bird's head CORALLINE. 

In one of the shallow pools near the base of Cap- 
stone Hill, I took several beautiful specimens of one 
of the prettiest of the Polyzoan polypes, Cellularia 

196 THE bird's-head coralline. 

avicularia. Well does it deserve tlie name of Bird's 
head Coralline, given it by tlie illustrious Ellis, for 
it possesses those curious appendages that resem- 
ble Vulture's heads, in great perfection. All these 
specimens of mine were most thickly studded with 
them, not a cell without its bird's head, and all see- 
sawing, and snapping, and opening the jaws, with the 
most amusing activity, and (what was marvellous) 
equally active on one specimen from whose cells all 
the polypes had died away, as in those in which 
the polypes were protruding their lovely bells of 

The polypidoms were distinctly visible to the naked 
eye, and attracted my attention before T touched them, 
while yet in their native pool ; though of course I did 
not know what they w^ere until I examined them to 
better advantage. Some of them stand two inches in 
height, and are about one third of an inch in widest 
diameter. The cells are set in longitudinal series, 
two or three rows abreast, and closely adhering; the 
branchlets thus formed divide dichotomously, (that is, 
into two, and each of these into two more, and so on,) 
and so make broad fan-shaped branches, which are 
segments of funnels : and the peculiar elegance of 
this zoophyte consists in the mode in which these 
ultimate branches are set on the stem, viz. in a spiral 
turn, so that the effect is that of several funnels set 
one within another, but which yet are seen, on turning 
the whole round, to compose one corkscrew band of 
fans. (See Plate X. fig. I.) 

The stem ascends perpendicularly from a slender 
base which is attached to the rock, or to the cells of 

Plai^ J>C 

FHtrossc del et- Ijtk. 

Fruited hyKul/ManddSr Waltfln.^ 



a Lepralia which encrust the rock; the midmost 
part of the spire is most expansive, whence the 
diminution above and below is pretty regular, The 
general colour, while alive, is pale buff, but the cells 
become nearly white in death. 

When examined microscopically it is, however, that 
the curious organization of this zoophyte is discovered, 
especially when examined in full health and vigour, 
with all the beautiful polypes protruded and expanded 
to the utmost, on the watch for prey. It seems to me 
a poor thing to strain one's eyes at a microscope over 
a dead and dry polypidom, as it does to examine a 
shrivelled and blackened flower out of a herbarium ; 
though I know well that both the one and the other 
are often indispensable for the making out of techni- 
cal characters. But if you want to get an insight 
into the structure and functions of any of these 
minute animals, especially such as are so transparent 
that all the offices of hfe are discernible in active 
operation, or if you want to be charmed with the 
perception of beauty, or delighted with new and sin- 
gular adaptations of means to ends, oi if you desire 
to see vitality under some of its most unusual and yet 
most interesting phases, or if you would have emotions 
of adoring wonder excited, and the tribute of praise 
elicited to that mighty Lord God who made all things 
for his own glory, — then take such a zoophyte as this, 
fresh from his clear tide-pool, take him without injury 
done by violently tearing him from his attachment, 
and therefore detach with care a minute portion of the 
surface-rock itself, and then drop him with every 
organ in full activity into a narrow glass cell with 

198 THE birds' heads. 

parallel sides, filled with the purest sea-water, and 
put the whole on the stage of your microscope with a 
power of not more than 100 linear, at least for the 
first examination ; — I greatly mistake if you will not 
confess that the intellectual treat obtained is well 
worth, aye, ten times more than worth, all your 

The cells of the Bird's-head Coralline are oblong, • 
shaped somewhat like a sack of com, with a spine 
ascending fi^om each of the upper corners. (See figs. 
2 and 3.) Each stands on the summit of its prede- 
cessor in the same row, and side by side with those of 
its fellow rows, in such an order that the top of one 
cell comes opposite the middle of the one beside it. 
The top of the cell is rounded and appears imperforate, 
but we shall presently find an opening there. The 
broad side that faces inwardly has a large elliptical 
transparent space occupying nearly its whole surface, 
which, from its well-defined edges, I was long tempted 
to think, was really a great aperture, though delicate 
manipulation appeared to give a very subtle surface 
to it ; this, as I subsequently found, is covered with a 
very thin and elastic membrane, and answers a pecu- 
liar end. Just below one of the spines that crowns 
the summit of the cell, on one of the edges, rather on 
the interior than on the exterior, is situated a little 
tubercle, to which is attached, by a very free joint, a 
birds-head process, in all essential particulars agree- 
ing with that of Cellularia cilitata which I have 
already described. The lower mandible in this case 
is, however, set farther back, and the upper is desti- 
tute of those tooth-like serratures that characterize it 


in the kindred species. The motions are exactly 
the same in both cases. I observe that sometimes the 
place of the bird's head is occupied by an oval or 
pear-shaped body, which is probably an early stage of 
its development; and when perfectly formed there 
is much difference of size, some of these curious 
organs being twice as large as others on the same 

Now let us come to the polype itself. It is when 
we get a good lateral view of a single inhabited cell, 
that we obtain a knowledge of the structure of the 
tenant. The summit of the cell is the]i seen to pro- 
trude, diagonally towards the inner side, — (i. e. to- 
wards the axis of the spire) a tubular mouth, which 
is membranous and contractile. When the animal 
wishes to emerge, this tubular orifice is pushed out 
by evolution of the integument, and the tentacles are 
exposed to view, closely pressed into a parallel bun- 
dle (See fig. 4); the evolution of the integument, that 
is attached at their base, goes on till the whole is 
straightened, when the tentacles diverge and assume 
the form of a funnel, or rather that of a wide-mouthed 
bell, the tips being slightly everted (See fig. 5). 
They are furnished with a double row of short cilia 
in the usual order, one set working upward, the other 
downward. Their base surrounds a muscular thick 
ring, the entrance to a funnel-shaped sac, the substance 
of which is granular, and evidently muscular, for its 
contractions and expansions are very vigorous, and 
yet delicate. Into this first stomach passes with a 
sort of gulp any animalcule, whirled to the bottom of 
the funnel by the ciliary vortex, and from thence it is 


delivered, through a contracted, but still rather wide 
gullet, into an oblong stomach, the lower portion of 
which is obtuse. An extremely attenuated duct con- 
nects this, which is probably the true stomach, with a 
globular, rather small, intestine, which is again con- 
nected by a lengthened thread with the base of the cell. 
By an arrangement common to the ascidian type of 
the digestive function, the food is returned from the 
intestine into the true stomach, whence the effete parts 
are discharged, through a wide and thick tube that 
issues from it close behind the point where the gullet 
enters. This rectal tube passes upwards parallel to 
the gullet, and terminates by an orifice outside and 
behind the base of the tentacles. All these viscera 
are beautifully distinct and easily identified, owing to 
the perfect transparency of the walls of the cell, the 
simplicity of the parts, and their density and dark 
yellow colour. All of them are manifestly granular 
in texture, except the slender corrugated tube which 
connects the stomach with the globose intestine : 
this is thin and membranous, and is doubtless, if I 
may judge from analogy, capable of wide expansion 
for the passage of the food-pellet. 

The sudden contraction of the polype into its cell 
upon disturbance or alarm, and its slow and gradual 
emergence again, afford excellent opportunities for 
studying the forms, proportions, and relative positions, 
of the internal organs. In contraction, the globular 
intestine remains nearly where it was, but the stomach 
slides down into the cell behind it, as far as the flex- 
ible duct will allow, and the thick gullet bows out in 
front, shewing more clearly the separation between it 



and the rectum, and the insertion of both into the 
stomach. This retractation is in part eiFected by 
a pair of longitudinal muscular bands, which are 
inserted at the back of the bottom part of the cell, and 
into the skin of the neck below the tentacles. The 
contraction of these bands draws in the integument 
like the drawing of a stocking within itself, and 
forces down the viscera into the cavity of the 
cell, which is probably filled with the vital juices- 
(See Fig. 4). 

Besides the hind bands there is one or a pair of 
similar muscular bands attached on each side of the 
front part of the base of the cell, and inserted simi- 
larly into the neck. It was while watching the con- 
traction of these that I discovered with pleasure the 
use of the membrane-covered aperture up the front of 
the cell. At the moment of the retractation of the 
viscera into the cell, a large angular membrane was 
forced outward from the front side, which was pro- 
truded more or less in proportion to the degree of 
withdrawal of the polype, and as the latter emerged 
again, the membrane fell back to its place. It is 
evident then that this a provision for enlarging the 
cavity ; the walls are horny and probably almost 
inelastic, but when the stomach forces the intestine 
forward, and the thick gullet is bent outward by the 
withdi'awal of the neck and tentacles, the needful 
room is provided by the bulging out of this elastic 
membrane, which recovers its place by the pressure 
of the surrounding water, when the pressure of the 
fluids within is removed. 



The economy with which God works in nature has 
been often noticed, and especially that phase of it 
which consists in the profusion and variety of exist- 
ance that can be crowded and sustained in a given 
space. A plant is growing in the earth; it occupies a 
certain amount of room, and appears, to speak 
loosely, to fill it. But on examination we may find 
other plants growing on it ; its back, the angles of its 
branches, its buds, its leaves, the interior of its blos- 
soms, its seed-vessels — are occupied by many species 
of spiders and insects, which find ample room for the 
carrying on of their respective functions and the 
enjoyment of their lives; not to speak of the birds, 
and butterflies, and bees, and flies, that are but tem- 
porary visitants, mere comers and goers. Many of 
these minute animals have other creatures living on 
them as parasites ; the earwig that is snugly enscon- 
ced in the tube of that flower is tenanted by a long 
intestinal worm ; yonder caterpillar so calmly gnaw- 
ing out sinuous cavities in the edge of a leaf, sup- 
ports within a colony of infant ichneumons ; the little 
wild bee that has just alighted on this blossom would 
be found to carry about sundry maggots whose black 
heads peep out from beneath the rings of his abdomen. 
Even the very juices that circulate in the vessels of 
the plant probably bear along in their course the 
germs of invisible animalcules ; for if we take the 
leaves, or the flowers, or the stems, and make an 
infusion of them, carefully covering the vessel to 


prevent intrusion from without, we shall find in a 
day or two that the water is swarming with living 
creatures of various kinds, known to microscopic 
observers as infusory animalcules. 

But I think nowhere is this economy seen to better 
advantage now nowhere here is it more admirable than 
in the sea, especially about the rude rocks that fringe 
our coast, and that we are apt to think so barren and 
repulsive. The rough stony surface of the rock 
between tide-marks, is quite alive with beautiful and 
interesting creatures both animal and vegetable ; and 
as we find the profusion increase the nearer we 
approach to that line whence the nutrient water never 
recedes, we have a right to conclude, that it extends 
to an indefinite distance below tide-limit. The tiny 
pools that lie in the hollows, renewed twice every day 
by the influx of the sea, are perfect nurseries of plants 
and animals of the most curious forms, and of the 
most interesting structure. 

I will endeavour to enumerate the diverse kinds of 
organic life that I have detected on a small fi'agment 
of rock now before me. It is a bit scarcely bigger 
than a penny-piece, which T detached the other day 
from a little rock-pool near low-water mark on the 
sea- ward side of Capstone Hill. One single polype 
on it attracted my notice by its beauty ; and when I 
applied my chisel to the fragment, I did not suspect 
that it was particularly rich in animal life ; nor is it 
richer than usual in the amount of animal life that it 
supports, but the variety certainly struck me as 
remarkable on so small a surface, when I came to 
examine it. 


First of all, the surface is largely encrusted Tvith 
the cells of a Lej)raUa, the sj^ecies of which I shall 
probably better know when the developmeut of some 
of its granules that I am watching is further advan- 
ced. Over these cells a yellow Sponge has spread 
itself, very thin, and profusely spiculous ; and patches 
of a scarlet Sponge of another kind occur. Another 
portion of the surface is occupied by the rose-coloured 
crust of the common Coralline, overspreading like a 
beautiful smooth lichen, but without a single shoot or 
many -jointed stem as yet thrown up, to indicate its 
true character. 

These then may be called the ground-work, for we 
have not yet got higher than the surface. From this 
spring up two or three tiny Sea-weeds. That very 
elegant plant, Bryopsis plumosa, is represented by 
several of its fronds, of a most lovely green hue, pec- 
tinated on each side like a comb, with perfect regu- 
larity. Then there is a little specimen of Ptilota 
sericea, also a pectinated species, something like the 
Bryopsis in delicacy, but of a brownish red colour, 
and much less beautiful. Besides these, there are 
growing parasitically on one of the polypes presently 
to be mentioned, several very minute ovate fronds, 
not more than one eighth of an inch in length, of a 
rose-red hue, which are probably very young specimens 
of some of the PJiodymeiiice. 

Now let us look at the Zoophytes. Most conspi- 
cuous are several of the corkscrew-funnels that first 
caught my eye while undisturbed in the quiet pool 
and induced me to secure the fragment of supporting 
rock, — the spiral polypidoms of Cellalaria avicularia, 


one of the most curious of our native zoophytes. The 
specimens are particularly fine ; the cells tenanted 
with healthy polypes in great numbers, protruding 
their crystal stars of tentacles, and covered with scores 
of birds' heads nodding to and fro their bald heads 
like so many old men sleeping at church, and opening 
and shutting their frightfully gaping jaws like snap- 
ping turtles. 

Up the stem of one of these Bird's head Corallines 
a colony of Pedicellma Belgica has entwined its 
creeping clinging roots, and is displaying its clubbed 
polypes with unfolded tentacles in every direction. 
This is a very common species in our rock-pools, 
parasitic on many sea- weeds and calcareous polypes. 

The most abundant thing of all is Crisia aciileata^ 
a delicate and pretty species, easily recognised by its 
long slender spine springing from the margin of every 
cell. The multitude of these spines gives a peculiar 
lightness to the little shrubs in which this species 
delights to grow. 

Several other species are parasitic on the Crisia. I 
detect the curious tiny snake-heads of Anguinaria 
spatiilata, entwined about its stems. A stalk of 
BowerhanJda imhricata also is here, studded with 
little aggregations of cells in dense clusters, set on the 
slender thread-like stem at wide intervals. And a few 
of the pitcher-hke cells of that singular zoophyte, 
Beania mirahilis, set Avith hooked prickles, I find ; 
in one of which I can see the polype snugly packed, 
though I cannot get him to display his beauties out- 
side his door. 

Besides all these, there are at least two kinds of 



Hydroid polypes, both species of the family Corijnidm. 
The one is a minute sessile Coryne, I believe unde- 
scribed ; the other is either Clava multicornis or a 
Hydractinia, for though two specimens occur of it 
(as well as of the former) I cannot, from their youth, 
determine to which genus it is to be referred.* 

When I first looked over the fragment with a lens, 
I was sure that I saw Eucratea chelata, with active 
polypes; but as I cannot by close searching again find 
it, it is possible I was mistaken. 

But even at this moment I discover something new ; 
for two little Balani have just opened their valve4ike 
shells from amidst the yellow sponge, and are now 
throwing out their curled fans of most exquisitely 
fringed fingers, with precise regularity. 

The minute Crustacea that hide and play among 
the tangled stems of the zoophytes I will not mention, 
because their presence there may be considered as only 
accidental. But I cannot reckon as transient visitors 
a brood of infant Brittle-stars which I find creeping 
about the bases of the Cellularia, because I perceive 
that they have quite made the spot their home, and 
though they have been now several days in a vessel 
of water, free to leave their tiny fragment and visit 
others, or to roam over the expansive bottom of the 
the glass, if they will, they have no such desire ; but 

* Its head is rose-coloured, and this agrees with Clava, but the 
tentacles are covered with whorls of pointed tubercles, which Dr. 
Johnston states is not the case in that genus. On the other hand I 
cannot trace any echinated crust from which the polype springs, which 
is characteristic of Hydractinia, There are about nine tentacles, which 
appear to me to be set nearly in the same plane. No appearance of 
ovarian capsules is to be traced. It is probably a young Clava. 

god's providential care 207 

clinsf to the circumscribed limits of tlieir native rock, 
with as unconquerable a partiality as if they were 
Swiss, and these fragments of stone were their own 
dear Alps. They crawl and twine over the surface, 
and round the edges ; but it is with the utmost reluc- 
tance, and only by the use of force and stratagem 
combined, that I can get one off from the hold to 
which he tenaciously clings. I am watching the 
development, and I may say metamorphosis, of the 
little brood with interest, and cannot yet say what 
they are ; but I think they will turn out to be either 
Ophiocoma rosiila, or O. minuta, probably the latter. 
NoAV is not this a very pretty list of the tenantry of 
a bit of slate-rock two inches square ? And does it 
not read us an instructive honiilv, — one of those 
"sermons in stones" that the poet speaks of, — on the 
beneficent care of Him who " openeth his hand, and 
satisfieth the desire of every living thing" ? What a 
family is his to be provided for day by day, and yet 
every mouth filled ; — not one of these hungry polypes 
going unsupplied ! What a vast amount of happiness 
we here get just a glimpse of! for life, the mere 
exercise of vital functions in health, and in suitable 
circumstances and conditions, — the circumstances and 
conditions, I mean, for which the creatures themselves 
are fitted — is undoubtedly enjoyment, probably of as 
high a nature as the inferior animals are capable of 
receiving. We need not then ask for what purpose 
God has made so great a variety of creatures of no 
apparent benefit to man. Is it not an end worthy of 
a Being infinitely wise and good, that He has stocked 
every nook and corner of his world, even to overflow- 


ing, with sentient existences, capable of pleasure, and 
actually enjoying it to the full, hour by hour and day 
hy day? It is sin alone that is the cause of suffering ; 
and though as a whole the domain of man partook of 
the lapse of its federal head and lord, and so " the 
whole creation groaneth and travaileth together until- 
now," "hy reason of him who so subjected it to 
vanity," yet we may suppose that at least the inverte- 
brate portions of the animal creation suffer their share 
of the fall rather corporately than individually, rather 
nominally, in dignity, than consciously, in pain or 
want. And yet I suppose that at that glorious 
"manifestation of the sons of God," when creation 
shall be more than reinstated in primal honour, and 
shall be permanently established, so as no more to be 
liable to lapse, in the immutability of the Manhood 
of the Son of God, who is able to " bear the glory," 
even these low-born atoms of almost unseen and 
unsuspected life, shall in some way or other, get an 
augmentation of happiness, and thus take their humble 
share in the blessing of the redeemed inheritance. 


The little Coryne that I have mentioned in the 
preceding enumeration, appears to differ from any of 
those mentioned by Dr. Johnston. It may possibly 
be the young of some recognised species, but mean- 
while I shall describe it provisionally, as Coryne 
sessilis. (Plate XIV, fig. 3). The polypes, about -^ 
inch high, stand erect from the creeping stem, without 
any portion of the tube being free. They are long. 


slender, club-shaped, transparent, colourless except 
near the extremity where the core is dark red. The 
surface is much wrinkled transversely, and there is a 
very distinct polygonal reticulation, as if of cells, 
visible, beneath the integument, since it is not in the 
same focus as the wrinkles. The tentacles are very 
numerous, (I counted forty-five on one head, and 
there were probably some unseen,) shaped as in the 
larger species, with which their structure agrees, with 
a hyaline wrinkled neck enlarging abruptly into a 
globular yellowish head ; they are arranged in about 
six whorls, and stand out just as in the other species. 
They are greatly smaller than those of ramosa, as is 
the whole polype, but especially the tentacles, their 
diameter not being more than one-fourth that of the 
tentacles of C. ramosa. I see no capsules on any 
head. (Fig. 1.) 

Several of these polypes were standing up, not very 
near together, from a crust of Lepralia (on the stone 
just mentioned as chiselled from a rock-pool at Cap- 
stone) close around the base of a cluster of Cellularia 
aviciilaria. On very carefully separating one from 
its root, I found that the creeping stem was very 
small, not more than one-fourth the length of the 
free polype ; it appeared to consist of a horny trans- 
parent tube not distinguishable from the integuments 
of the polype, with which it was evidently continuous. 
If the animal is young, is the encasing tube not 
formed until some advance is made to maturity ? 

Another specimen, sessile on the Lepralia without 
any apparent creeping stem, was much taller and 
more slender, apparently by voluntary elongation. 


being undisturbed. The polype was almost quite 
Ly aline, with the red core only near the tip. The 
tentacles were still smaller than in the other, the 
necks tapering evenly to the junction of the globose 
heads, where they were very attenuated : the necks 
were hyaline with a few distant rings. They stood 
out at right angles, generally quite straight. The 
only tube appeared to be a very few investing . folds 
of gelatinous matter lying like a loose stocking about 
its foot. Fig. 2 represents this variety. After a day or 
two, both specimens shrank up into a shapeless club, 
with all the tentacles agglutinated together and 
around the body, in a mass. 


One of the most common of the minute zoophytes 
on this part of the coast is a species oiVedicellina. 
Dr. Johnston informs me that it is the P. Belgica of 
Van Beneden, a species which, when the " History of 
the British Zoophytes " was published, had not been 
recognised on our shores. I find it in great abund- 
ance parasitical on the bases of the smaller sea- weeds 
that grow at low water, and trailing over other objects 

The base of the animal consists of a cylindrical 
stem (Plate XII. fig. 1.) about -^^ inch in diameter, 
which creeps in an irregular twining manner over the 
support, branching at intervals irregularly, the branch- 
es intertwining and crossing each other, and sending 
forth, at more or less remote intervals, rounded buds, 
which soon elevate themselves upon a foot-stalk. 


Both the stalk and the head now develop themselves 
in length and thickness, until the stalk attains a 
length of ahout -j^ inch, and a thickness of ahout -^. 
The head or body of the Polype has now become 
somewhat bell -shaped, more gibbous, however, at one 
side than elsewhere; and this side, for distinction's 
sake I shall call the back. The edge expands into a 
wide circular disk sometimes slightly reverted, around 
wdiich are set, a little within the extreme rim, four- 
teen rather short cylindrical tentacles, separated from 
each other by somewhat more than their own width. 
They do not expand (so far as I have seen) beyond 
the limits of the disk, but rising perpendicularly 
from the edge, they curl over their tips in an elegant 
manner towards the common centre. The sides of 
these tentacles are set with delicate cilia (Fig. 2), the 
waves of which pass up on one side and down on the 
other. I think that the cilia are confined to the sides, 
for at either edge of the tentacular circle, where the 
exterior came between the eye and the light, I could 
not detect the least ciliary action. By means of the 
motions thus produced I saw minute, floating parti- 
cles drawn within the disk, and others shot forcibly 

The tentacles do not appear to be capable of con- 
traction or elongation, but when expanded their in- 
curved tips are continually being thrown inward, so 
as to increase the curl, and again opened. This 
action, which is almost constantly being performed, 
is a little spasmodic jerking or grasping, very slight 
in its degree. When alarmed, however, they are 
drawn inward by the common contraction of the 


disk, the edges of which then close together and form 
a puckered nipple, and the whole head becomes pear- 
shaped, in which state the animal might be mistaken 
for some large species of the stationary Rotifera. 

The colour of the wdiole animal is pellucid white, 
and viewed by reflected light, gives us no insight into 
its internal structure. It is only when examined as a 
transparent object that its interior is at all revealed. 
Even then the intguments are but imperfectly trans- 
parent; the whole animal, body, stalk, and stem, is 
covered with a thick coat of gelatinous matter, which 
is viscous, and in which Diatomacece, and other ex- 
traneous bodies, become entangled ; the whole exter- 
nal surface is either granular or slightly corrugated, 
and transmits the rays of light tinged with yellowish 
brown ; these circumstances, combined with the over- 
lying of the viscera in the globose body, render the 
internal parts difficult of determination. It appears, 
however, that the funnel of the disk proceeds diagon- 
ally downwards, until it nearly reaches the wall of the 
abdominal cavity on the ventral side. It then sud- 
denly turns, and (as I think) performs several convo- 
lutions transversely across the body. At length it 
merges into a capacious sac which occupies the whole 
of the lower part of the cavity of the body. It appears, 
however, as if the centre only of this sac were void, 
for granules of the food may be observed, in almost 
every individual, agglomerated into a somewhat loose 
lengthened pellet, which continually revolves on its 
long axis. This food-pellet becomes visible as a 
slender thread near the middle of the sac, and passes 
diagonally upward, increasing in size as it advances 


towards the middle of the back, where it terminates. 
An outline, a little larger, is visible around it, which 
I conjecture to be the internal wall of the intestine, 
within which an energetic vermicular ciliar}^ action 
goes on ; the rest of this viscus is composed probably 
of a thick glandular tissue, a structure not uncommon 
among the Rotifera. Within the substance of this 
sac, or else overlying it is a large transversely- oval 
viscus, of a yellowish brown hue, punctured all over 
with close-set round dots. The large intestinal sac 
passes in a narrow tube, from the point where the 
food-pellet terminated, forwards and upwards towards 
the front, and probably opens into the funnel ; for 
under pressure the contents of the intestine were 
forced out at the mouth, following the course of this 
tube. Such is the digestive system, no gizzard or 
manducatory organs being visible in any part. 

By one of those fortunate accidents which some- 
times occur unexpectedly, but which cannot be 
commanded, I obtained some light on the generative 
function of this zoophyte. Looking at one through 
the microscope, I perceived seated on the front, which 
was in a semi-expanded state, a minute oval hyaline 
body set with long cilia, with which it seemed to be 
struggling to free itself from the contact of the parent 
animal. Presently I saw another emerging, and I 
then observed what had escaped my notice before, 
that several more were lying m the free water around, 
sluggishly waving their cilia, but not swimming. On 
this I applied a sHght pressure with the compres- 
sorium, and presently a mass of some twenty or thirty 
was protruded from the mouth, most of which mani- 


fested independent action. These bodies, (germs I 
may surely call them) are somewhat pear-shaped (Fig. 
8) with a little tubercle at the larger end, around which 
are set a few (about four or five) long cilia or setse, 
twice or thrice as long as the body. These are not 
used for vibratile action, but as oars slowly waved 
through the water, or apparently to push withal, when 
the gemmule is making good its exit. When this is 
effected, it proceeds only a short distance ; the waving 
motion then becomes more feeble, and presently 
ceases. Under stronger pressure a larger mass was 
forced out, consisting mostly of germs immature, in 
wliich the cilia appeared as a broad thin band stretch- 
ing out from the neck forwards, but without any 
motion. I could distinctly trace the course of these 
germs through the pellucid body, and found that 
they proceeded from a large opaque mass, lying across 
the cavity, between the buccal funnel and the large 
intestinal sac ; and they appeared to issue by the 
same orifice as that which gave exit to the contents 
of the intestine. I hence infer, that like other animals 
whose adult character is to be fixed to a changeless 
base, the young of this species are endowed for a brief 
period with the faculty of locomotion, sufiicient to 
enable them to transport themselves to a site more or 
less remote from the parent, where then each fixes 
itself and becomes the founder of a colony. 

The motions of this zoophyte are lively and ener- 
getic; and hence we may infer the existence of a 
well-developed system of muscles. The body is 
occasionally tossed to and fro by the forcible bending 
of the foot-stalk ; this latter is in some degree capable 


of contraction, though not to any great extent. The 
creeping stem, however, which appears to be homoge- 
neous with the foot-stalks, has no power of contraction. 
The stem and stalks are transparent, of a yellowish 
hue, shewing a fibrous texture, or perhaps one com- 
posed of irregular lengthened cells. By contraction 
and flexure it is thrown into annular wrinkles, from 
the appearance of which I should judge the substance 
to be coriaceous. Something like a fibrous core can 
be discerned traversing its axis, which can be traced 
through the slender constricted joint into the body, 
whence it dilates as it passes upward. From analogy 
in stalked Rotifera^ I conclude this to be a fascia of 
muscles, perhaps becoming two bands in the body, 
and passing upwards on opposite sides to the head ; 
their office being the retractation of the tentacular disk. 
The opacity of the integument precludes the sight of 
any other muscles, or of any nervous cords, if such 

The structure of this zoophyte seems to point it out 
as osculant between the Anthozoa and the Polyzoa, 
though manifesting no very close affinity with the 
normal genera of either. It is interesting also as 
being evidently a link by which the Zoophyta are con- 
nected with the Rotifer a, since it certainly approaches 
nearer to Stephanoceros, and Floscularia than any 
other Polype yet discovered. 

After these observations were made, I obtained 
specimens of much larger size and in gi'eat profu- 
sion, entwined among the stems of a Crisia, from low- 
water off" the Tunnel. It was a beautiful sight to look 
at the hundreds of heads all in active motion, the 


moment after they were detached from the rock (a 
piece of stone being chiselled off) and put into a 
phial of clear water. The crown of arching tentacles 
was much more elevated than I had yet seen it, the 
tips only being incurved ; and the floating atoms 
were ever and anon shot forcibly from out the disk. 
Some excellent views with the microscope enable me 
to correct and augment my observations. The ten- 
tacles are nearly square in section, or slightly grooved 
down the back. Their bases interiorly may be traced 
a good way down the funnel. The marginal part of 
the disk that surrounds and connects their bases is 
like a hyaline web, marked with close-set concentric 
lines or wrinkles. The lateral ciliary current of 
each tentacle runs down until it meets a strongly- 
marked ring of cilia, set round the funnel a little 
below the origin of the tentacles, and it was interest- 
ing to see in a vertical aspect each individual current 
merge into this great vortex. The walls of the fun- 
nel below this circle are more thick and opaque, and 
are perhaps muscular and endowed with the power of 
various contraction ; like the oesophageal funnel in 
8tej)ha7toceros, &c. Two that I counted had each 
fifteen tentacles. 

They associate with other Polypes. In this intsance 
PedicelUna, Anguinaria spatulata, and Bowerhanhia 
imhricata, had all entwined their creeping steems to- 
gether around the Crisiaj which was also intermingled 

with Crisidia cornuta. 

When the tentacles are much extended and expan- 
ded, the resemblance to some conditions of Stephan- 
oceros is very striking, and they are every instant 


twitched inwards at the tips, in the same manner as 
those of that genus. 

I find two other species of the same genus : the 
one is P. echi?iata, much like the above in every 
respect, except that the stalk is more or less studded 
with thick bristles or prickles standing out at right 
angles. The other is marked by a very slender stalk, 
sometimes gently swollen in the middle, and having 
its base abruptly enlarged into a bottle-shaped bulb. 
The tentacles nearlv meet in the centre of the disk. 
(Plate XII. Fig. 5), This species chiefly occurs on 
the common Coralline. I have little doubt that it is 
the P. yracilis of Sars ; though I find the bulbous 
base much more abruptly angular than in his figures ; 
my specimens also have fifteen tentacles, whereas 
twenty are assigned to the species by this eminent 
Norwegian zoologist. This character, however, 
depends probably upon age rather than upon species. 



Metamorphosis of Lepralia — Appearance of the Gemmule — 
Budding of the Cell-spines — Development of the Polype — 
Growth — The Three-headed Coryne — Singular Use of its 
Disk — Beania — Coralline Light — Lime Light — Tubulipora— 
Marine A^iviaria — The Principle explained — Elegance of Sea- 
plants — Facilities for Study — Details of Experiments —  
Mode of procuring the Sea- weeds — Success — Anticipations 
— A curious Coincidence— Sponge -Crystals — Their elegant 
Form — Immense Numbers— Mutual Entanglement — Ciliated 
Sponge — Its crystal Coronet — Powers of Restoration. 


Ju7ie Wth. — I detached a minute atom of a red 
colour swimming rapidly in gyrations in the water in 
which were fragments of polypiferous rock. I caught 
it with a tube and examined it. It was a globose, or 
rather semi-elhptical body, of a soft consistence, 
covered on its whole surface with strong bristly cilia, 
in rapid vibration. Near the rounder end, was evi- 
dently an orifice, with amorphous lips ; and when the 
globule was submitted to slight pressure, just sufficient 
to confine it, it made efforts to get away by slightly 
lengthening itself, and drawing in the sides around 
this mouth, which was in a manner protruded forcibly 

Tiatu, xm.^ 






\ N^ ^ 



.1. \\ 


"i. \ 



Prin'.-d. I -TiiUiiiuiJf 'Z6 r.'jU/m 

rHiyoAst dtl 't V ', 

]1 W-. OCEANIA F^U^IL...A-: 


and repeatedly. Presently on the restraint being 
continued, the globule threw out from different parts 
of its periphery, long lancet-like flexible pointed 
bristles twice as long as the cilia, with which it 
pushed here and there. These lancets I perceived 
were ordinarily bent at an acute angle near their base, 
so as to lie flat on the body unperceived ; and I think 
there were many of them, for I fancied I saw the 
minute basal parts of many that were so concealed. 
Those that were exposed were ever and anon suddenly 
bent up again and so concealed, and again protruded. 
After examining it awhile, I carefully put it without 
injury into a glass of sea- water alone. Its diameter 
was about 77^ th inch (See Plate XIIL Fig. 1). 

I afterwards saw another in the original vessel, and 
both this and the former had the habit of coming 
into contact with the side of the vessel, and continuing 
in one spot for a considerable while, (half an hour or 
more) not moving a hair's breadth from the place, and 
yet evidently not adhering', because o-yratino^ unifoiTaly 
all the time by the ciliary action. One of these I lost, 
and the one that I isolated got into a corner of the 
cell, and decayed. But carefully looking at the origi- 
nal vessel, I found some half a dozen scattered over 
the sides, but in a more advanced condition. These 
were all firmly adhering to the glass, and that so 
inseparably that the most careful touch of a pin's 
point to detach one, tore it into a shapeless mass of 
broken flesh. The youngest of these had taken the 
form of a flattened oval, or long hexagon, with one 
end more pointed than the other, in which the redness 
was curdling and separating into masses. The others 


showed eight points budding from the more acute 
end ; and in one the most advanced, these were already- 
produced into eight slender spines, set around the 
end like the teeth of a comb, and slightly divergent. 
In this the the general hue was a pale pellucid flesh 
colour ; and an opaque hand of deep red was 
arranged in a horse-shoe form, around the end oppo- 
site the spines. (See fig. 2). 

During the next day little change took place except 
the lengthening of the spines ; but by the following 
evening, forty-eight hours after I had observed it in 
the state just described (fig. 2) it had made importan^- 
advances. The spines, without increasing in thick- 
ness, had shot out, until the middle and next pair were 
nearly as long as the transverse diameter of the body » 
the other two pairs were much shorter. A touch 
with a pin broke short ofi" two of these, proving that 
they were very brittle, whence, and from their crystal- 
line appearance, I infer their calcareous or siliceous 
nature. But while I was examining it I was surprised 
to observe a bundle of filaments among the spines, 
and much resembling them, except that they were 
bent irregularly, and slowly moved among themselves, 
while the spines were fixed. Lo ! the bundle is gently 
protruding, and presently the whole is withdrawn like 
lightning out of sight into what I can no longer hesi- 
tate to call the oval cell. A simultaneous jerk in the 
contents of the cell set me upon trying to make out 
the form of these, in which, notwithstanding the con- 
fusion of the parts, I had already traced (or fancied) 
the body of an ascidian polype, doubly bent up, like 
that of a Membranipora or Flustra. By careful 


watcliing during many protrusions and retractions, I 
was enabled to make out this witli sufficient distinct- 
ness ; tliougli some portions of the area were still semi- 
opaque, and therefore obscure. I could see also an am- 
ple aperture on the surface opposite to that at which I 
was looking (viz. the adhering base, for as it was in 
a glass vessel, 1 could apply my microscope only to 
the outside, and therefore only saw it through the 
glass to which it had attached itself) ; this aperture 
on the upper surface, was excentral, and situated on 
the half nearest the spinous end. Possibly this aper- 
ture was covered with a membrane, (like that in 
Cellularia avicularia) for I think that the bundle of 
tentacles were not protruded through it, but through 
an orifice more terminal, yet still above the plane of 
the spines. The body of the polype, of a horny 
yellow hue, was doubly bent to one side, and behind 
the angle was an irregular transverse mass of deep red 
matter, and another small spot of the same was a 
little on one side of the centre. These were all the 
remains of the scarlet substance left. (See fig. 3). 

On the morning of the third day I found the polype 
perfectly formed and well-expanded, a circle of 
thirteen tentacles; these were usually protruded in 
the form of a funnel, with the rim so slightly everted 
as scarcely to entitle it to be called a bell, but now 
and then they were momentarily spread out quite flat 
so as to make a beautiful plane star, the tips forming 
a regular circle. I could now distinctly see the intes- 
tinal tube, which is inserted into the stomach low 
down in the body, and proceeds nearly parallel with 
it to the aperture. The body of the pol^-pe is con- 


siderably protruded from the cell, below the diver- 
gence of the tentacles. The great circular aperture 
on the upper surface, appears to have a rim. (See 
fig. 4). 

June \%th. A week old : no material alteration 
from last record. I found, however, the next day a 
gemmule represented at fig. 5, which perfects the series. 
It was in a state intermediate between figs. 1 and 2. 
Its length is ;^th inch. The edges are pellucid, and 
have an appearance of radiating fibres. The redness 
is curdled, but not wholly separated. This continued 
for several days, the red mass slowly concentrating • 
but no spines appeared ; and at length I fear it was 
broken accidentally ; granular matter came out, leav- 
ing a glassy cell attached to the side of the vessel. 
The species was probably Lepralia coccinea ; but 
eight spines are more than are ascribed to any of 
our species. 


June 18. — In the glass jar that contains Actinige, 
&c., that I brought from Torquay, I found on the 
Membranipora, a very young specimen of Volycera 
A.-lineata, about \ inch long : very pretty. Some of 
the cells of the polype appeared to have been recently 
gnawed, probably by this little mollusk. 

In the same vessel I found another species of 
Coryne. (Plate XIY, figs. 4 — 6). It is sessile on a 
decaying frond of some Alga, about g^inch in height 
in medium extension, with no appearance of tube. 
The polype is sub -cylindrical, slightly clavate, round- 

Plaf.s JIV. 

t'UOci%t. idttblh 

frmhdf'«h:.:ii-.'n'yjideL & lialton. 


ITS FORM. 223 

ed at the tip, where there are three tentacula formed 
exactly hke those of C. ramosa, but the round heads 
are much larger in proportion, and more coarsely 
granulated ; their diameter is nearly equal to that of 
the polype : the head is flattened vertically ; the oval 
grains of which it is composed are very distinct, and 
each is furnished with a conical transparent point 
ending in a short bristle. This point is distinct from 
the oval granule, and its outline is perfectly discernible 
when seen vertically, as well as laterally. (Fig. 6). 
Near the base of the pol}^e, at a slight swelling, there 
are four or five arms, which seem to be the withered 
remnants of former tentacles, from which the round 
heads have sloughed off. The specimen may be the 
young of C. ramosa. (Fig. 5.) The animal is active, 
bending both the tentacles and the body in all direc- 
tions : the latter especially is frequently curved round 
into a circle, so that the tip touches some part of the 
side, or one of the tentacles. The very extremity 
above the tentacles is surprisingly flexible ; and its 
walls are contractile and expansile. I saw the terminal 
orifice often partially opened by evolution of the skin, 
and then partially closed by a puckering of the sur- 
rounding margin : sometimes the interior was turned 
out so far as for the head to form a longish cylinder. 
But to my surprise, I find that tliis orifice is a great 
sucking disk. I had put the animals in what micros- 
copists call a live-box, and the two glass surfaces were 
just wide enough apart to allow the animal free liberty 
to turn about in all directions as far as it wished. On 
my looking at it after a momentary interval I saw that 
the extremity had suddenly become a large circular 


disk, of thrice the diameter of tlie body ; its substance 
was gelatinous, full of oblong granules arranged con- 
centrically. (See fig. 4.) I neither saw this disk 
evolved nor retracted ; but after some time, on looking 
at it, the same phenomenon was repeated. In order 
to obtain a better sight of it, but without a suspicion 
of what I was about to effect, I slightly turned the 
tube of the box, carrying with it the alga to which the 
polype was attached, my eye upon it attentively 
observing all the time. The base of the polype moved 
away from its position, but the broad disk was im- 
moveable ; I continued to turn the up2:)er glass, until 
at length the body was dragged out so as to be con- 
siderablv attenuated : still tlie disk maintained its 
hold of the lower glass, with no other change than 
that of being elongated in the direction in which it 
was dragged. At length it slowly gave way, and 
resumed its original shape by gradual and almost 
imperceptible diminution of the circumference. 

The oval grains of the tentacle-heads appear to be 
packed in a gelatinous substance which fills their 
interstices, and envelopes the wdiole, which is then (I 
tliink) inclosed in a thin calcareous shell, for it breaks 
with a loudish crepitation under pressure. It is pos- 
sible however, that this crackling may have indicated 
the crushing of the grains themselves.*' They often 
get loose from the heads without pressure, and then 

* At this time I was not familiar with the filiferous capsules of the 
Helianthoid Zoophytes. I will not cancel my recorded impressions of 
the actual observation ; hut I now think that it is likely the granules 
were filiferous capsules, the crepitation that which marks the emission 
of the thread, and the "film of jelly," possibly the filament itself. 

BEANIA. 225 

appear to drag a film of the jelly in which they are 
inclosed. Each granule is hollow at the centre, the 
cavity being oblong, and connected with the surface 
by a slender orifice at the interior end of the oval. I 
am astonished that Van Beneden should say there is 
no globosity in these -tentacles in the active and vigo- 
rous polypes, and that this is merely the result of 
contraction.' On the contrarv I do not believe that 
the head is capable of contraction ; and I am. sure 
that it is globular in polypes in the highest health and 

I venture to assign to this little Coryne a provisional 
appellation, subject, of course, to future correction. 
Its triple head suggests the name of Coryne Cerberus, 


The Beania mirahilis before-mentioned was para- 
sitical on the same Cellidaria avicularia, and con- 
sisted of only a few cells springing from their creep- 
ing thread. Dr. Johnston's figure is very good, but 
the spines in my specimens were more regularly 
curved, and tapered to a point. Their direction more- 
over is not fully expressed by him, they shoot partially 
around the cell, following the curve of its transverse 
outline, but diagonally also, towards the point. The 
spines of both series thus curve diagonally towards 
each other, and if sufficiently projected, would meet 
and cross at obtuse angles, and embrace the cell. I 
cannot see any keels ; the spines appear to me to 
spring from the smooth glassy side of the cell. 



The common Coralline, if held to the flame of a 
candle, burns with a most vivid white light. If we 
take a shoot and let it dry, and then present the tips 
to the flame, just at the very edge, not putting them 
into the fire, the ends of the shoot will become red 
first, snapping and flying off with a crackling noise ; 
some, however, will retain their integrity, and these 
will presently become white-hot, and glow with an 
intensity of light most beautiful and dazzling, as long 
as they remain at the very edge of the flame, for the 
least removal of the Coralline, either by pulling it away, 
or by pushing it in, destroys the whiteness.. It will 
however return when again brought to the edge. The 
same tips will display the phenomenon as often as you 
please. I did not find the incrusting lamina that 
spreads over the rock before the shoots rise, show the 
light so well as the shoots. 

The brilliant light obtained by directing a stream 
of oxygen gas upon a piece of lime in a state of com- 
bustion, occurred to my mind as a parallel fact ; and 
I experimented with other forms of the same substance. 
The polvpidoms of Celliilaria aviciilaria, and of 
Eucratea chelata, one of the stony plates of Caryophyl- 
lia, and a fragment of oyster-shell, I successively placed 
in the flame, and all gave out the dazzling white light 
exactly as the Coralline had done. The horny poly- 
pidom of a Sertularia, on the other hand, shrivelled 
to a cinder. 



June 21. — At Hele, in a dark tide-pool between 
overhanging rocks, I gathered a frond of Nitophyllum 
laceratum, on which were several patches of a pretty 
zoophyte, evidently identical with the Tuhulipora 
JUahellaris of Fahri-cius, which though known to 
inhabit the shores of Europe from Greenland to the 
Mediterranean, has been only lately recognised as a 
British species by Mr. W. Thompson, who found it on 
the North coast of Ireland. It consists of a great 
number of long, slender, cylindrical tubes of pellucid 
coral or shelly substance, set side by side and over- 
lapping each other on the frond of the sea-weed, to 
which they adhere for a portion of their length, and 
then curve upward so as to be free at their terminal 
portions. The tubes are somewhat crowded, but 
diverge from each other, so as to form a resemblance 
to a curling feather. The margins of the tubes are 
oblique in some cases, in others quite transverse ; and 
the edges are slightly expanded. The exterior of the 
tube is set with many annular ridges, which are 
evidently the expanded rims of the tube at various 
periods of its growth ; the new shelly matter being 
deposited not from the very edge, but from a ring a 
little way within it, so as to leave the narrow expanded 
lip projecting as a permanent ridge, in a manner com- 
mon in many shells. The walls of the tubes are 
sparsely studded with minute round grains, like those 
of Crisia ; and similar ones are found far more thickly 
in the shapeless mass of shelly matter that envelopes 
the bases of some of the tubes, connecting them like 
a web. 



One prominent object that I had in view in coming 
to the coast was the prosecution of a cherished scheme 
for the conservation of marine animals and plants in 
a living state. 

For several years past I have been paying attention 
to our native Kotifera, and in the course of this studv 
had kept fresh water in glass vases unchanged from 
year to year, yet perfectly pure and sweet and fit for 
the support of animal life, by means of the aquatic 
plants, such as ValUsneria, Myriophyllum, Nitella 
and Chara (but particularly the former two), which 
were growing in it. Not only did the Infusoria and 
Rotifera breed and multiply in successive generations 
in these unchanged vessels, but Entomostraca, Plan- 
aricB, Naides and other Annelides, and Hydrce, con- 
tinued their respective races ; and the young of our 
river fishes were able to maintain life for some weeks 
in an apparently healthy state, though (perhaps from 
causes unconnected with the purity of the water) I 
was not able to preserve these long. 

The possibility of similar results being obtained 
with sea- water had suggested itself to my mind, and 
the subject of growing the marine Algae had become 
a favourite musing, though my residence in London 
precluded any opportunity of carrying out my project 
My notion was that as plants in a healthy state are 
known to give out oxygen under the stimulus of light^ 
and to assimilate carbon, and animals on the other 
hand consume oxygen and throw ofi* carbonic acid 
the balance between the two might be ascertained by 


experiment, and thus the great circular course of 
nature, the mutual dependence of organic life, be 
imitated on a small scale. 

My ulterior object in this speculation was twofold. 
First, I thought that the presence of the more delicate 
sea- weeds (the Khodosperms or red families especially, 
many of which are among the most elegant of plants 
in colour and form), growing in water of crystalline 
clearness in a large glass vase, would be a desirable 
ornament in the parlour or drawing-room ; and that 
the attractions of such an object would be enhanced 
by the presence of the curious and often brilliant-hued 
animals, such as the rarer shelled Mollusca, the grace- 
ful Nudibranchs, and the numerous species of Sea- 
anemones, that are so seldom seen by any one but the 
professed naturalist. 

But more prominent still was the anticipation that 
by this plan great facilities would be afforded for the 
study of marine animals, under circumstances not 
widely diverse from those of nature. If the curious 
forms that stand on the threshold, so to speak, of 
animal life, can be kept in a healthy state, under our 
eye, in vessels where they can be watched from day to 
day without being disturbed, and that for a sufficiently 
prolonged period to allow of the development of the 
various conditions of their existence, it seemed to me 
that much insight into the functions and habits of 
these creatures, into their embryology, metamorphoses, 
and other peculiarities, might be gained, which other- 
wise would either remain in obscurity, or be revealed 
only by the wayward " fortune of the hour." 

Nor have these expectations been wholly unrealized. 



My experiments, tliough not yet entirely successful, 
and needing much more attention and time to com- 
plete them, have yet established the fact, that the 
balance can be maintained between the plant and the 
animal for a considerable period at least, without dis- 
turbance of the water ; while my vivaria have afforded 
me the means of many interesting researches, the 
details of which form the subject of these pages. 

The first thing to be done was to obtain the Algse 
in a growing state. As they have no proper roots, 
but are in general very closely attached to the solid 
rock, from which they cannot be torn without injury 
by laceration, I have always used a hammer and chisel 
to cut away a small portion of the rock itself, having 
ready a jar of sea- water into which I dropped the 
fragment with its living burden, exposing it as little 
as possible to the air. The red sea-weeds I have 
found most successful : the Fuci and Laminarm, 
besides being unwieldy and unattractive, discharge 
so copious a quantity of mucus as to thicken and 
vitiate the water. The TJlvm and Enter omorphm on 
the other hand are apt to lose their colour, take the 
appearance of wet silver-paj)er, or colourless mem- 
brane, and presently decay and slough from their 
attachments. The species that I have found most 
capable of being preserved in a living state are Chon- 
driis crisj)us, the Delesserm, and Iridea edulis. The 
last-named is the very best of all, and next to it is 
Delesseria sanguinea, for maintaining the purity of 
the water, while the colours and forms of these render 
them very beautiful objects in a vase of clear water, 
particularly when the light (as from a window) is 


transmitted throngli their expanded fronds. Many 
of my friends, both scientific and unscientific, who 
have seen my vases of growing Algae at various times 
during the present year, both at Torquay and at this 
place, have expressed strong admiration of the beau- 
tiful and novel exhibition. 

I have not as yet been able to presence the water 
to an indefinite period. Sometimes the experiment 
has quite failed, the plants decaying and the animals 
dying almost immediately ; but more commonly, the 
whole have been preserved in health for several weeks. 
The following, are the particulars of the most success- 
ful of my eflforts. 

On the 3rd of May I put into a deep cylindrical 
glass jar (a confectioner's show-glass) 10 inches deep 
by 5|- inches wide, about three pints of sea-water, and 
some marine plants and animals. 

On the 28th of June following, I examined the 
contents of the jar as carefully as was practicable 
without emptying it, or needlessly disturbing them. 
It had remained uncovered on the tables in my study, 
or sometimes in the window, ever since, a little w^ater 
only having once been added merely to supply the 
loss by evaporation. The water was perfectly clear 
and pure. A slight floccose yellow deposition had 
accumulated on the sides of the jar, but there was 
verv little sediment on the bottom. I had taken no 
note of the plants or animals when I had put them 
in ; but as none of them had died, and none had been 
either abstracted or added, the following enumeration 
gives the original as well as then present contents. 

There were at this time in the jar the following 


Algae, all in a growing state, and attached to the 
original fragments of rock : — 

Two tufts oiDelesseria sanguinea, each with nume- 
rous leaves. 

Two of Rhodymenia jithata, one small, the other a 
large tuft. 

A small Ptilota plumosa, growing with one of the 

A Chondi'us crisjms, with 

An Ulva latissima^ growing parasitically on one of 
its fronds. 

These seven plants had supplied for eight weeks 
the requisite oxygen for the following animals, wliich 
were at this time all alive and healthy : — 

Anthea cereus. 

Actinia hellis, a large s^iecimen. 

hellis, a half-grown one. 

anguicoma, large. 

anguicoma, small. 



rosea y a small specimen. 

mesemhryanthemum, young. 

• mesemhryanthemum, young, another variety. 

Crisia denticiilata, a large tuft. 

Coryne ?, young. 

Pedicelli?ia Belgica, two numerous colonies. 

Memhrampora pilosa. 

Doris fhilineata'} J. 

Volycera 4,- line at a, very small. 

Phyllodoce lamelligera, ahout 1 1 inches long. 

A coil of small Annelides, 


Several SerpuhB. 




Grantia nivea. And other smaller zoophytes and 
sponges which I could not identify. 

Soon after this examination I went on a journey, 
and did not return till the 7th of July. The weather 
had set in very hot : whether this, comhined with the 
closeness of the room, had had any effect I do not 
know; hut on my return I found the water heginning 
to he offensive, a sort of scum forming on the surface, 
and the animals evidently dying. Some were already 
dead, hut most of the others recovered on heing 
removed to fresh sea-water. This result, though it 
puts an end to my experiment at this time, I do not 
regard as conclusive against the hypothesis ; for of 
course animals are liahle to death under any circum- 
stances, and the corrupting body of one of these in so 
limited a volume of water would soon prove fatal to 
others, even though there might be no lack of oxygen 
for respiration. It is possible that one of the large 
Actinia} may have casually died during my absence, 
the timely removal of which might have averted the 
consequences to the others; but this is only conjec- 
ture. Perhaps there was too large an amount of 
animal life in proportion to the vegetable ; but the 
maintenance of all these in health and activity for 
nearly nine weeks seems hardly to agree with such a 

Should these experiments be perfected, what would 
hinder our keeping collections of marine animals for 


observation and study, even in London and other 
inland cities ? Sucli a degree of success as I have 
attained would admit of so desirable a consummation, 
for even in London no great difficulty would be expe- 
rienced in having a jar of sea-water brought up once 
in a couple of months. I hope to see the lovely 
marine Algae too, that hitherto have been almost 
unknown except pressed between the leaves of a book, 
growing in tlieir native health and beauty, and wav- 
ing their delicate translucent fronds, on the tables of 
our drawing-rooms and on the shelves of our con- 

It is a curious circumstance that experiments 
exactly parallel to these, founded on the same prin- 
ciples, have been simultaneously piosecuted with the 
same results by another gentleman, whose name is 
well known in the scientific world. Mr. Robert 
Warington of Apothecaries' Hall has now (Dec. 1852) 
at his residence in London a marine aquarium, with 
living Algae and Sea-anemones in a healthy condition. 
I find, on comparing notes, that Mr. Warington has 
precedence of me in instituting these experiments ; 
but the particulars that I have above detailed of my 
own success were fully recorded before I had the 
slightest knowledge that the thought of such a project 
had ever crossed the mind of any person but myself. 
(See Aj)j)endia:J^ 


Highly curious are the needle-like crystals or spi- 
culae of flint or lime that enter into the composition of 
many of our Sponges ; and I would hardly wish to 


give a greater treat to an intelligent but unscientific 
friend then by placing an atom of woolly stuff, scraped 
from the surface of a rock with a pin's point, beneath 
a good microscope with a rather high power on, and 
bidding him peep. I am sure you would have been 
charmed with the sight I have had this morning ; 
I was both surprised and delighted myself. 

Going carefully over, w^ith a triple lens, a frond of 
NitopJiyllum laceratum, that I obtained a day or two 
since at Hele, — the same frond, by the way, that had 
already yielded me the interesting Tuhnlijiora jiahel- 
lariSy — my eye was caught by what appeared to be the 
ends of the tubes of some larger species of the same 
genus projecting from over the edge of the sinuous 
and lacerated frond. I immediately transferred it to 
a glass cell, and applied it to the stage of the com- 
pound microscope with a power of 220 diameters. 
To my astonishment a mass of starry crystals met 
my view, entangled among each other almost as thick 
as they could lie, bv scores, nav bv hundreds. For 
a moment the eye was bewildered by the multitude of 
slender needle-like points crossing and reerossing in 
every possible direction ; but soon the curious spec- 
tacle began to take some kind of order ; the crystals 
were seen to be all of one form, though varying con- 
siderably in length and thickness ; they are three-rayed 
stars, diverging at an angle of 120 degrees : the rays, 
straight, slender needles, perfectly cylindrical except 
that they taper to a fine point, smooth and transparent 
as if made of glass, and highly refractive. 

These spiculee appear to me to be held together only 
by their mutual entanglement and interlacing; their 


points, in the process of formation, (I had almost 
said, of crystallization J have shot through and among 
each other, so that it would he almost impossible to 
extract one from any point without either breaking 
off its rays, or tearing away a considerable portion of 
the whole surface. The rays shoot in the same plane, 
and in that plane the stars lie, not quite at random, 
as to their direction ; for the great majority have one 
point directed lengthwise from the mouth of the tube 
towards the base. There are not wanting however 
many, which point in the opposite direction ; and 
several at intermediate angles. Of course, it requires 
but little divergence from the first named direction to 
produce the second ; still, however, the prevalent 
order appears to be this. 

I cannot trace any fibrous or gelatinous or granular 
matter in which the spiculee are set; but beneath the 
layer formed by their interlacing points, there is a 
surface composed of round granules of transparent or 
pellucid matter, set as close as possible, which are 
plainly seen between the crossing needles. This ap- 
pears to be the interior lining of the tube, in fact the 
tube itself, around which the spiculse are arranged as 
a loose outer casing, giving firmness to the whole. I 
could not detect spiculse of any other form than the 
three-rayed stars ; but several of these had one or 
more of their rays broken short; for from their com- 
position they are very brittle, as I have often proved 
in other species. 

The form of this specimen was so very irregular 
that but a poor idea can be conveyed of it by words : 
it may, however, be roughly described as an elliptical 

Piatt xv: 

P.H. irosse dd. et. Uth. 

I'r-ntid byHulLnanddScifahon. 


/~i r^ ^ ^rrrr • t^, /~k nr*— >-x7-/-NTT-N-r-'i-> 


mass, sending forth from one side several tubes, which 
divide or branch into others. The former portion lies' 
adhering to the face of the sea-weed, but most of the 
tubes project from the edge of the frond. The longest 
tube is about J inch in length, and -^ inch in greatest 
diameter. The tubes terminate with plain transverse 
orifices, without any thickening : in one the margin 
is slightly expanded, but this is evidently accidental. 
The spiculae project from the edge their points in brist- 
ling array, as they do from the w^hole surface; and if 
it were an object of large size, one would say it was ^ 
formidable afi'air to take hold of w^ith ungloved hands. 

I watched carefully for any trace of vortex or cur- 
rent ; but the particles and floating atoms in the 
vicinity of the apertures were perfectly still ; and I 
could not detect the least appearance of motion in the 
water. If there be any circulation, as Dr. Grant has 
satisfactorily shown to exist in the genus, it is pro- 
bably periodical. 

The accompanying figures may assist you to form 
a notion of the general appearance of this sponge, 
and of the peculiar structure or armature which I 
have described above. Fig. 3, Plate XV., represents 
the natural size of the entire mass ; Fig. -4 the same 
considerably magnified, attached to the surface of a 
piece of the sea-weed frond ; Fig. 5 represents the 
terminal portion of the largest tube, much more 
highly magnified, with the spiculee, and the granular 
surface beneath. The colour is dull pellucid w^hite. 
The characters of the species appear to identify it with 
the Grantia hotryoides of naturalists, a sponge said 
to be rare in the south of England. 



On the same Alya I find a compound specimen of 
another pretty and interesting sponge of the same 
genus, Grantia ciliata. It is seated near the edge 
of the frond of the sea-weed, and sends up two little 
oval lobes with short necks, of which a very exact 
notion may he obtained by comparing them with the 
bottles in which soda-water is sold; but they are not 
more than J inch in height. The oval body is bristled 
over with slender simple spicule, all pointed, some 
abruptly, others very gradually : they vary much in 
thickness and length, some being of excessive tenu- 
ity; they stand out in all directions from the sur- 
face, like the quills of a porcupine, but there is a 
slight tendency to point forward. Abundance of loose 
granulous or floccose matter is entangled among the 
spines, but this is probably accidental and uncon- 
nected with the organization of the sponge. The 
colour is dead-white ; and this I should suppose to 
be produced by the reflection of light from the thou- 
sands of shining spicules, just as the whiteness of 
snow is merely the light reflected from a vast number 
of minute crystals of ice. 

The neck of this bottle-like sponge consists of a 
dense fringe of the ordinary spiculse, perhaps more 
slender than the average, which are set around the 
orifice like a crown, pointing forwards and a little 
outwards ; so as to perfect the resemblance to a 

I incline to think that the stream of water periodi- 


cally projected from this orifice may be the mould, if I 
may so say, upon which this coronal fringe is modelled, 
or at least a means of restoring its form if acciden- 
tally injured. I had a specimen at Torquay, much 
larger than this, globose in form and about half an 
inch in diameter. The neck of fringing spines had 
been accidentally crushed and distorted: but after it 
had lain for some days in a yessel of sea-water I was 
agreeably surprised to find it restored to its original 
regularity aad beauty. I cannot detect any jet of 
water from this specimen before me, but in that ob- 
tained at Torquay, (unless my memory greatly fails 
me,) T distinctly and repeatedly saw it. 


Resp^'ration and Circulation — A Transparent Ascidia — Organs of 
Sight — Play of the Gills — Ciliary Waves — The Heart — Cours- 
ing of the Blood globules — Reversal of the Current — "Na- 
ture," what is it ? — The Praise of God — Luminosity of the 
Sea — A Charming Spectacle — Light-producing Zoophytes — 
Luminosity a Vital Function — Noctiluca, a luminous Animal- 
cule — Its Structure — Production of its Embryo — The Slender 
Coryne — Description — Parasites. 


To take a stolen peep into the Adyta of nature's 
mysteries, to surprise, as it were, life, carrying on its 
more secret and recondite functions, must always afford 
a peculiar pleasure to the reflecting and curious. This 
the microscope often allows us to do ; and when our 
eve is hrouo:ht to the little dark orifice of the wonder- 
shewing tube, we may fancy that we are slyly peeping 
through the keyhole of Madam Nature's door, her 
laboratory door, where she is actually at work, con- 
cocting and fashioning those marvellous forms which 
constitute the world of living beings around us. 

I have been for the last two or three hours engaged 
in v/atching two of the most important vital functions, 
respiration and circulation, under circumstances of 
unusual felicity for the study. In looking over one 


of my vivaria, a pan containing marine plants and 
animals that have been undisturbed for several weeks, 
I found, attached to a sea-weed, a tiny globule of 
jelly, not bigger than one of those little spherules 
wherewith homoeopathy supplants the jalaps and 
rhubarbs that our grandmothers believed in, and 
swallowed. It is an Ascidian mollusk, one of that 
tribe of humble animals that form the link bv which 
the oyster is connected with the zoophyte ; and it 
appears to belong to that genus that the learned 
Savigny has named ClavelUna. Transparent as the 
purest crystal, it needed only to be transferred in a 
drop of its native sea-water to the stage of the micros- 
cope, and the whole of its complex interior organism 
was revealed. The old sage's wish that man had a 
window in his breast, that we might see into him, was 
more than realised in this case : the whole surface of 
the little animal was one entire window ; its body was 
a crystal palace in miniature. (See Plate XV., fig. 1.) 
To form a correct notion of this tiny creature, 
imagine a membranous bag, about as large as a small 
pin's head, with an opening at the top and another 
very similar in one side ; the form neither globular 
nor cubical, but intermediate between these two, and 
rather flattened on two sides. One of the orifices 
admits water for respiration and food; the latter 
passes through a digestive system of some complexity, 
and is discharged through the side aperture. The 
digestive organs lie chiefly on one side, the opposite 
to that which forms the principal subject of my ex- 
amination : they are but dimly indicated in the accom- 
panying sketch, and I shall not further notice them. 


242 THE EYES. 

The two orifices scarcely clifi'er from each other in 
form or structure ; from what I know of them in other 
animals of this tribe, they are protrusile tubes of flesh, 
terminating abruptly, and fringed around the interior 
with short filaments or tentacles ; the exteriors of the 
tubes are furnished with minute oval specks of crimson, 
which are doubtless rudimentary eyes ; they look like 
uncut rubies or garnets, set in the transparent colour- 
less flesh, without any sockets ; and probably convey 
only the vague sensation of light, without definite 
vision. How many there are around each aperture I 
cannot say from observation, (probably eight on one 
and six on the other) for I have not seen either so 
far protruded as to be properly opened : each is slowly 
thrust out in a puckered state for a little way, slightly 
opened, then suddenly and forcibly drawn in, and 
tightly constricted. 

The whole, animal is inclosed in a coating of loose 
shapeless jelly, that appears to be thrown off" from its 
surface, rather than to be an organic part of it ; still, 
at one corner of the bottom it forms a thick short 
foot-stalk, by which the creature is attached to the 
sea-weed ; and this foot-stalk evidently has an organic 
core into which there passes a vessel from the body 
of the animal. 

What first strikes the eye on looking at this little 
creature, and continues long to arrest the admiring 
gaze, is the respiratory organ in full play. The gills 
are large ; they form a flattened bag, nearly of the 
same shape as the animal itself, but a little smaller 
every way, which hangs down like a veil on one side 
of the general cavity, — the side nearest the eye as 


you look on the accompanying figure ; the digestive 
organs lying beyond and beneath it. The inner sur- 
face of this transparent sac is studded with rings of a 
long-oval figure, set side by side in four rows. These 
rings appear to consist of a slight elevation of the 
general membranous surface, so as to make little 
shallow cells, the whole edges of which are fringed 
with cilia, whose movements make waves that follow 
each other round the course in regular succession. 
In truth it is a beautiful sight to see forty or more of 
these oblong rings, all set round their interior with 
what look like the cogs on a watch-wheel, dark and 
distinct, running round and round with an even, mo- 
derately rapid, ceaseless motion. (See fig. 2). These 
black running figures, so like cogs and so w^ell defined 
as they are, are merely an optical delusion ; they do 
not represent the cilia, but merely the waves which 
the cilia make ; the cilia themselves are exceedingly 
slender, and close-set hairs, as may be seen at the ends 
of the ovals, where a slight alteration of position pre- 
vents the weaves from taking the tooth-like appearance. 
Sometimes one here and there of the ovals ceases to 
play, while the rest continue ; and now and then, the 
whole are suddenly arrested simultaneously as if by 
magic, and presently all start together again, which 
has a most charming effect. But what struck me as 
singular was that while in general the ciliary wave 
ran in the same direction in the diff*erent ovals, there 
would be one here and there, in which the course was 
reversed ; and I think that the animal has the power 
of choosing the direction of the waves, of setting them 
going and of stopping them, individually as well as 


I am afraid my attempt to describe these phenomena 
is but partially successful : I am sure it cannot convey 
to you anv adequate idea of the spectacle itself. Have 
you ever gazed with interest on a complicated piece 
of machinery in motion, such as is common in our 
large manufacturing houses ? If so, I dare say you 
have felt a sort of pleased bewilderment at the multi- 
tude of wheels and bands, rolling and circling in 
incessant play, yet with the most perfect steadiness 
and regularity. Sometliing of that sort of impression 
was made on my mind by the sight of the respiratory 
organ of this tiny Ascidia, coupled as it was with 
another simultaneous, equally extensive system of 
movements, yet quite independent, and in nowise 
interfering with the former. I mean the circulation 
of the blood. 

At the very bottom of the interior, below the 
breathing sac, there is an oblong cavity, through whose 
centre there runs a long transparent vessel, formed of 
a delicate membrane, of the appearance of w^hich I 
can give you a notion only by comparing it to a long 
bag pointed, but not closed, at either end, and then 
twisted in some unintelligible manner, so as to make 
three turns. This is the heart ; and within it are seen 
many minute colourless globules, floating freely in a 
subtle fluid; this is the nutrient juice of the body, 
which we may, without much violence, designate the 
blood. Now see the circulation of this fluid. The 
membranous bag gives a spasmodic contraction at 
one end, and drives forward the globules contained 
there ; the contraction in an instant passes onward 
along the three twists of the heart, (the part behind 


expanding immediately as the action passes on) and 
the globules are forcibly expelled through the narrow 
but open extremity. Meanwhile, globules from around 
the other end have rushed in, as soon as that part 
resumed its usual width, which in turn are driven 
forward by a periodic repetition of the systole and 

The globules thus periodically driven forth from 
the heart now let us watch, and see what becomes of 
them. They do not appear to pass into any defined 
system of vessels that we may call arteries, but to find 
their way through the interstices of the various organs 
in the general cavity of the body. 

The greater nnmber of globules pass immediately 
from the heart through a vessel into the short foot- 
stalk, where they accumulate in a large reservoir. 
But the rest pass up along the side of the body, 
which (in the aspect in which we are looking at it, 
and as it is represented in the figure) is the right. As 
they proceed, (by jerks of course, impelled by the 
contractions of the heart) some find their way into 
the space between the breathing surfaces, but how I 
can hardly say, if the breathing organ is indeed, as I 
had supposed, a sac ; — they certainly do slip in be- 
tween the rows of oval rings, and wind along down 
between the rings in irregular courses. Of course, I 
know that I am liable to mistake here, confounding, 
through the transparency of the organs, those globules 
wliich are outside the breathing sac with those that 
are within it ; still after the utmost care by focusing, 
I think I am sure the globules do pass as I have said ; 
besides those which wind along on the outside, or 


between the outer surface of the sac and the interior 
surface of the body ; for many take this course, on 
both sides of the sac. 

But to return to the current wliich passes up the 
right side : arriving at the upper angle of the body, 
the stream turns off to the left abruptly, principally 
passing along a fold or groove in the exterior of the 
breathing sac, until it reaches the left side, down 
which it passes, and along the bottom, until it arrives 
at the entrance of the heart, and rushes in to fill the 
vacuum produced by the expansion of its walls after 
the periodic contraction. This is the perfect circle ; 
but the minor streams that had forked off sideways in 
the course, as those within the sac, for example, find 
their way to the entrance of the heart by shorter ajid 
more irregular courses. 

One or two things connected with this circulatory 
system are worthy of special notice. The first 
is that its direction is not constant but reversible. 
After watching this course followed with regularity 
for perhaps a hundred pulsations or so, all of a sud- 
den, the heart ceased to beat, and all the globules 
rested in their circling course, that I had supposed 
incessant. Oh, ho ! said I, — 

" Thy stone, Sisyphus, stands still, 
Ixion rests upon his wheel ; — " 

when, after a pause of two or three seconds, the pul- 
sation began again, but at the opposite end of the 
heart, and proceeded with perfect regularity, just as 
before, hut i7i the opposite direction. The globules, 
of course, obeyed the new impulse, entered at their 


former exit, and passed out at their former entrance, 
and performed the circulation in every respect the 
same as before, but in the reverse direction. 

Those globules that pass through the vessel into the 
foot-stalk appear to accumulate there as in a reser- 
voir, until the course is changed ; when they crowd 
into the heart again and perform their grand tour. 
Yet there is a measure of circulation here, for even 
in the connecting vessel one stream ascends from the 
reservoir into the body as the other (and principal 
one) descends into it from the heart ; and so, vice 

I have spoken of these motions as being performed 
with regularity ; but this term must be understood 
with some qualification. The pulsations are not quite 
uniform, being sometimes more languid, sometimes 
more vigorous ; perhaps forty beats in a minute may 
be the average ; but I have counted sixty, and pre- 
sently after thirty ; I have counted twenty beats in 
one half-minute, and only fifteen in the next. The 
period during which one course continues is equally 
uncertain ; but about two minutes may be the usual 
time. Sometimes the pulsation intermits for a second 
or so, and then goes on in the same direction ; and 
sometimes there is a curious variation in the heart's 
action, — a faint and then a strong beat, a faint and a 
strong one, and so alternately for some time. 

Several other points in the organization of this 
animal I might notice ; as the forked muscular bands 
that ramify from each aperture, the use of which is 
doubtless to perform the strong retractations of those 
orifices ; and the curious knobbed or hooked processes 


that hang down freely like so many walking-sticks 
into the cavity of the hody from the oral orifice, to 
the number of ten at least, the nature and use of 
which organs I am not aware of. 

Wishing to see the course of the food into the 
stomach, I mingled indigo and carmine with the 
water ; hut though I saw the particles of pigment 
continually taken in (not, as I had expected, by the 
oral aperture but by the anal), I could not trace 
them beyond the immediate vicinity of the orifice ; 
nor could I discern the least discoloration of the 
stomach or intestines by it. Indeed I could not 
detect any distinct canal or tube leading from either 
aperture to the stomach. The gelatinous coat, how- 
ever, which invests the whole animal, has apparently 
the power of imbibing water ; for on my lemoving it 
into clean water after two or three hours' immersion 
in the coloured, the whole of the investing coat was 
tinged with faint purple, which slowly disappeared. 
The admixture of pigment was probably injurious to 
its health, for both circulation and respiration were 
suspended, and were resumed only after some half- 
hour's immersion in the pure water. 

When I spoke just now of these wonderful mechan- 
isms and functions as " Nature's operations," I used 
the phrase in playfulness rather than in seriousness. 
For who indeed is Nature, and what are her attri- 
butes ? Is not the term one in which we take refuge 
from the necessity of acknowledging the God of 
glory? " It has become customary," says the greatest 
of modern zoologists, to personify Nature, and to 
employ the name for that of its Author, out of re- 


sj)ect." I fear it is rather out of shame than out of 
respect ; the potent dread of that terrific word ''cant," 
I much fear has effected the substitution. If we 
remember the word of Jehovah himself, " Whoso 
offereth praise glorifieth me" (Psalm 1, 23.), we shall 
not think it any mark of respect to conceal his name 
in speaking of his wondrous works, and to give the 
honour of their formation to a fabulous and imaginary 

No, this little ball of animated jelly is one of the 
inventions of the Almighty Son of God ; of Him who 
is the Brightness of God's glory, and the express 
Image of his Person, without whom there was not 
any thing made that was made. Its intricate ma- 
chinery, all its clock-work circles and revolutions, were 
originally the contrivance of his infinite wisdom, the 
workmanship of his matchless skill. And they are 
maintained in their beautiful order and precision, not 
by any inherent force implanted in them at first, but 
by his perpetual sustaining will. He, upholding all 
things by the word of his power, maintains the vital 
functions of this tiny globule, as truly and with as 
absolute a volition as He maintains the motions of 
the solar system, or they would instantly collapse into 
nothing. He made this also for his own glory ; and 
it is included in that extensive category, of which it 
is declared, '' For his pleasure they are, and were 

Every word of the above description was penned, 
and my drawing was made, long before I was a^vare 
that this little animal had been already described and 


figured by Mr. Lister in the Pliil. Trans, for 1834. He 
assigned to it no name, but it has since been called 
Verophora Listeri. Whatever points of agreement 
are found between the observations of that eminent 
naturalist and my own, are due to our having drawn 
from a common original : and I Avill not cancel this 
paper, since a concurrence of independent research is 
valuable in all science. 


I was coming down lately by the Steamer from 
Bristol to Ilfracombe in lovely summer weather. 
Night fell on us when approaching Lynmouth, and 
from thence to Ilfracombe, the sea, unruffled by a 
breeze, presented a phenomenon of no rare occurrence, 
indeed, to those who are much on the water, but of 
unusual splendour and beauty. It was the phospho- 
rescence of the luminous animalcules ; and though I 
have seen the same appearance in greater profusion 
and magnificence in other seas, I think I never saw it 
with more delight or admiration than here. Sparkles 
of brilliance were seen thickly studding the smooth 
surface, when intently looked at, though a careless 
observer would have overlooked them ; and as the 
vessel's bow sploughed up the water, and threw off the 
liquid furrow on each side, brighter specks were left 
adhering to the dark planks, as the water fell oflf, and 
shone brilliantly until the next plunge washed them 
away. The foaming wash of the furrow itself was 
turbid with milky light, in which glowed spangles of 
intense brightness. But the most beautiful effect of 


the Avliole, by far, and what was novel to me, was pro- 
duced by the projecting paddle-boxes. Each of these 
drove np from before its broad front, a little wave 
continually prolonging itself, which presently curled 
over outwardly with a glassy edge, and broke. It 
was from this curling and breaking edge, here and 
there, not in every part, that there gleamed up a 
bluish light of the most vivid lustre, so intense that T 
could almost read the small print of a book that I 
held up over the gangway. The luminous animals 
evidently ran in shoals, unequally distributed ; for 
sometimes many rods would be passed, in which none 
or scarcely any light was evolved, then it would appear 
and continue for perhaps an equal space. The waves 
formed by the summits of the swells behind the ship 
continued to break, and were visible for a long way 
behind, as a succession of luminous spots ; and occa- 
sionally one would appear in the distant darkness, 
after the intermediate one had ceased, bearing no 
small resemblance, as some one on board observed, to 
a ship showing a light by way of signal. The scene 
recalled the graphic lines of Sir Walter Scott : — 

Awak'd before the rushing prow. 
The mimic fires of ocean glow, 

Those lightnings of the wave ; 
"Wild sparkles crest the broken tides, 
And flashing round, the yessel's sides 

With elfish lustre lave ; 
While far behind, their livid light 
To the dark billows of the night 

A blooming splendom* gave. 

Lord of the Isles, i. 21. 

Wliile on this subject I will mention the charming 


spectacle presented by some of tlie Sertularian Zoo- 
phytes, in the dark. Other naturahsts, as Professor 
Forhes, Mr. Hassal, and Mr. Landsborough, have 
observed it before me, and it was the admiration 
expressed by them at the sight that set me upon 
witnessing it for myself. I had a frond of Laminaria 
digitata, on whose smooth surface a populous colony 
of that delicate zoophyte Laomedea geniculata had 
established itself. I had put the frond into a vessel 
of water as it came out of the sea, and the polypes 
were now in the highest health and vigour in a large 
vase in my study. After nightfall I went into the 
room, in the dark, and taking a slender stick struck 
the frond and waved it to and fro. Instantly one and 
another of the polypes lighted up, lamp after lamp 
rapidly seemed to catch the flame, until in a second 
or two every stalk bore several tiny but brilliant stars, 
while from the regular manner in which the stalks 
were disposed along the lines of the creeping stem, 
as before described, (See p. 90 ante), the spectacle bore 
a resemblance sufficiently striking to the illumination 
of a city ; or rather to the gas-jets of some figure of 
a crown or V. E., adorning the house of a loyal citizen 
on a gala-night ; the more because of the momentary 
extinction and relighting of the flames here and there, 
and the manner in which the successive ignition ap- 
peared to run rapidly from part to part. 

It has been a question whether the luminosity of 
these polypes is a vital function, or only the result of 
death and decomposition. I agree with Mr. Hassal 
in thinking it attendant, if not dependent, upon vita- 
lity. The colony of Laomedea in the preceding 


experiment was still attached to its sea-weed, and 
this had not been washed up on the beach, but was 
growing in its native tide-pool when I plucked it ; 
it had never been out of water a single minute, and 
the polypes were in high health and activity both be- 
fore and after the observation of their luminosity. 


Some weeks afterwards I had an opportunity of 
becoming acquainted with a minute animal to which 
a great portion of the luminousness of the sea is 
attributed. One of my large glass vases of sea-water, 
I had observed to become suddenly luminous at night 
on being tapped with the finger ; the light was in 
minute but brilliant sparks, chiefly at various points 
on the surface of the water, and around its edge. It 
is possible, however that the vibration of the glass 
produced a more powerful effect on the animals in 
contact with it, than on those in the water at some 
distance. After the first tap or two, the light was not 
again produced, and no jarring or shaking of the ves- 
sel would renew it. I determined to examine the 
water carefully in the morning. 

In the mean time, however, in the course of 
examining some polypes from another vessel, I unin- 
tentionally isolated a minute globule of jelly, which I 
presently recognized as Noctiluca miliaris. Eemem- 
bering that this animalcule is highly luminous, I 
immediately suspected that the luminous points of 
my large vase might be owing to the presence of this 
same little creature. I accordingly set the jar in the 



window between my eye and the liglit, and was not 
long in discovering, without the aid of a lens, a 
goodly number of the tiny globules swimming about 
in various directions. They swam with an even glid- 
ing motion, much resembling that of the Volvox 
glohator of our fresh water pools, but without any 
revolution that I could perceive. They appeared 
social, congregating into little groups, of half a dozen 
or more together ; and when at rest affected the sur- 
face and the side of the glass next the light. A 
jar or shake of the vessel sent them down from the 

It was not very easy to catch sight of them, nor to 
keep them in view when seen, owing rather to their 
extreme delicacy and colourless transparency than to 
their minuteness. They were in fact distinctly appre- 
ciable by the naked eye, for they measured from — th 
to -^ th of an inch in diameter. 

, With a power of 230, each was seen to be a globose 
sac of gelatinous substance, ordinarily smooth and 
distended, but occasionally roughened with fine 
wrinklings in the surface. At one side there is a 
sort of infolding, exactly like that of a peach or plum 
(see figs. 6 and 8, Plate XVI.) ; and this if viewed 
directly sidewise appears to be a deep furrow, from 
which the two rounded sides recede, with two minor 
lobes betAveen them. (See fig. 7). From the bottom 
of the furrow springs a small slender proboscis of a 
thickened ribbon-form, very narrow, and about as 
long as two-thirds the diameter of the globe, with the 
tip slightly swollen. (Fig. 11). It is frequently 
twisted with one curl, but is moved sluggishly in 

Ph:^- XVf 

T,lGoss-dei fl-liij 

^ -jiTiiJ fsT1,Lib>inndiLS^\>c<hfi 


6-i: no:tiluc:^_ miliaris 


various directions. I could not detect the least trace 
of ciliary action on it, or indeed on any part of the 

Within the sac, which appears to have thin walls, 
there is a mass of viscera suspended from the bottom 
of the furrow, and hanging down in a gradually taper- 
ing cone nearly to the bottom of the interior, to which 
in some specimens (not in all}, the mass was tied by 
a slender thread or ligament. Among the viscera 
were two or three globular organs, one of which was 
yellow, and appeared larger and more filled, with food, 
or less and more empty, in different degrees, in dif- 
ferent individuals. I should have little hesitation in 
pronouncing this, from its resemblance to a similar 
viscus in the Polyzoa and Eotifera, to be the stomach. 
The other globose viscera were colourless, but had a 
turbid nucleus. 

The arrano-ement and bulk of this mass of viscera 
vary much in individuals, and in some the whole is 
almost obsolete. In one or two there was an isolated 
globose viscus far down in the cavity near the bottom. 
As these specimens were smaller, I thought of the 
male of Asplanchna, (a Eotiferous genus of which 
these animals strongly reminded me,) in which the 
digestive viscera are obsolete, and suggested the pos- 
sibility of this isolated viscus being a sperm-sac. On 
pressure, however, to the extent of bursting the viscus, 
the extruded contents were granular, and I could not 
trace any Spermatozoa. I believe that it was only 
the stomach, got loose by the decay or absorption of 
the connecting membranes, and floating freely in the 
cavity. Fig. 8 is the representation of one of these- 


From the point whence the viscera hang, a numher 
of vessels diverge on all sides, in the substance of the 
integument. They narrow speedily, ramify, and con- 
nect with each other by the branches. The distance 
to which they can be traced, and their number, differ 
greatly in individuals. 

I endeavoured to excite the light-producing action 
under the microscope. For this purpose I isolated 
two drops of water on the compressorium, the one 
fresh, the other salt containing one or more Nocti- 
lucce : then screwing up the glass-plate, the drops 
were made to unite. I had expected that the contact 
of the fresh water would kill the animal, but that a 
spark would be evolved at the moment. None how- 
ever appeared, though I tried the experiment repeat- 
edly with different specimens. The contact seemed 
to be fatal ; the gelatinous integument shrivelled and 
puckered up, and the beautiful globe became shapeless 
in a few seconds. I then caught two or three in a 
glass tube, and blew them into a vessel of fresh water 
in a dark room, but not a spark was elicited in this 

Au^. 13. — Examining other individuals I find some 
in which there are several of the isolated vesicles, 
which I had supposed above to be the stomach. That 
conjecture is doubtless erroneous. They consist of 
yellow clear globules, with a central well-defined 
nucleus more or less developed, of a rich reddish hue. 
I perceive they are not strictly isolated ; each is con- 
nected with a thick arbuscule of vessels, which diverge 
from its vicinity in all directions, with many branches, 
many anastomosing unions, and thickened web -like 


points of contact. Each of these globules is con- 
nected with its fellows, by a long straight vessel, and 
also with the mouth. They do not therefore float 
freely, but are moored within the cavity, at a little 
distance from the internal walls, by threads which 
pass in various directions to the walls. I incline to 
tliink them germs, but am not certain. 

This last conclusion has been just confirmed ; for 
having found one with a single vesicle, much larger 
and evidently more developed than any before, I con- 
tinued to watch it. I presently saw that the vesicle 
w^as being drawn nearer to the fissure, very slowly 
and gradually, but uniformly : at length it became 
evident that it was about to be discharged ; and after 
about two hours from the time I first observed it, it 
was clear of the parent, though still sessile on the 
part from wdiiih it had escaped. It was now a per- 
fect sphere, about -3-^ inch in diameter, of a granular 
surface, of a horny yellow hue, containing within it a 
small, well-defined, but irregular-shaped mass of dark 
red substance, near the centre. Its appearance is 
shown at figure 10, more magnified than the other 
figures. Twelve hours produced no change in the 
appearance of the excluded ovum, and the next morn- 
ing, in shifting the water, I unfortunately lost it. 


I find in a vase of old sea-water kept pure by 
living sea-weed, a Coryne which appears to have a 
very distinct character and habit from the others that 
have fallen under my notice. It is adhering to the 


cylindrical footstalk of a Rhodijme?iia, about which 
it creeps irregularly in the form of a white thread, of 
about the same thickness as a human hair, as I found 
by placing both beneath the microscope together. 
This thread is cylindrical and tubular, perfectly hya- 
line, and without any vestige of rings or wrinkles, 
but permeated by a central core apparently cellular in 
texture, and hollow, within which a rather slow circu- 
lation of globules, few in number and remote, is dis- 
tinctly perceived. The thread is very long in pro- 
portion to its thickness, and here and there starts 
from the support and sends off free branches, or 
rather divides ; the ramifications generally forming 
an acute angle, and continuing of the same thickness, 
form, and structure as before. Some of the branches 
send off others, some soon form the terminal head, 
others run to a great length, even to ten-times the 
the length of the head. This excessive length and 
tenuity of the branches constitute a character very 
unlike that of C. ramosa. (See Plate XVI. figs. 

The polype-head appears to be a clavate enlarge- 
ment of the branch, no open end of an investing tube 
being visible in any part of the zoophyte. The head 
is oblong, usually cylindrical, rounded at the endi 
but sometimes considerably ventricose in the middle ; 
and wherever this form occurred, I invariably found 
a large bubble of air in the midst of the swollen part. 
The head is transparent, slightly tinged with yellow- 
ish ; corrugated with coarse annulations. The core 
of the stalk enters into its lower part, and soon dilates 
into a semi-opaque granular mass, becoming more 


dense at the very extremity, where it quite fills the 
interior. At the extreme point are fixed four tentacles 
of the usual form, directed to the cardinal points, 
they are long, slender, and furnished with glohular 
heads. The number was four, neither more nor fewer, 
in every head on the zoophyte, as also in each head 
of another specimen near. Near the lower part of the 
polype -he ad, viz, at about one -third from its com- 
mencement, four tentacles project in the same manner, 
exactly similar to the terminal ones, but without dilat- 
ed heads. I had thought, in examining a similar 
phenomenon in Coryne Cerberus^ that these were 
tentacles from which the heads had sloughed ; but 
their appearance in this animal is too healthy to 
allow me to maintain that opinion ; and the con- 
stancy of their number and position in every example 
induces me to conclude them normal. Are they male 
tentacles as described by M. Loven in Coryne Sarsii ? 
Both these and the capitate ones are seen on close 
examination to be studded with tubercles, somewhat 
whorled, from which short bristles project at right 
angles. (See figs. 4, 5). The inferior tentacles are 
furnished with rounded extremities, somewhat globose, 
but not larger than the diameter of the tentacles 

The form of the pol}^e reminds one of a familiar 
kind of turnstile, or of those presses the screw of 
which carries arms loaded at their extremities with 
globes of metal to increase their impetus when turned. 
It seems more closely allied to C. Cerhertis than to 
the other species that I have met with, though differ- 
ing in the ramified habit, and in the number of its 


capitate tentacles. It is much infested with parasites : 
a Vorticella grows on it; and a sort of Vibrio. The 
latter is in immense numbers, forming aggregated 
clusters here and there, the individuals adhering to 
each other, by mutually twisting in several turns 
around each other, and projecting in bristling points 
in every direction. These animalcules vary in length, 
some being as long as— inch, or more; with a diameter 
of ^-^ inch. They are straight, equal in thickness 
throughout, and marked with distinct transverse lines ; 
they bend themselves about with considerable activity 
and frequently adhere to the polype by one extremity, 
or by a small portion of their length, while the 
remainder projects freely. 

Fig. 1. Represents the Coryne of the natural size, 
which is distinctly perceptible to the naked eye 

2. The same magnified. 

3. The polype more highly magnified. 

4. An inferior tentacle. 

5. A capitate tentacle. 

The species, I find, has been well figured by M. 
Dujardin, in the Ann. des Sci. Nat. for l<S4o, by the 
appellation of Staiiridia; though I do not very 
clearly apprehend w^hether he intends this for the 
designation of the species. If so it must be called 
Coryne staiiridia. 


Hillsborough — Meaning of its Name — Its Grandeur — Its Flowers 
— Commanding Prospects — ^View Westward — Inland — East- 
ward — Seaward — Formation of a Beach — A Kock-slip — An- 
thea — Its Tentacles retractile — Their Structure — Thread- 
Capsules — A Summer Morning Walk — Autumnal Flowers — 
Langley Open — The Hangman — Curious Legend — Coast 
Scenery — Lee — A Ship's Travels —Solitude — CaA-es — Sponges 
— The Hispid Flustra — Its Appearance and Structure — 
Expansion of its Bells — Ciliary Action — A miniature Whirl- 
pool — Visit to Braunton Cam Top — Tragical Legend — 

Score Valley — Squirrels — Trentistowe — White Bindweed — 
Oak Hedges — Reaping — Braunton — Curious monumental 
Inscription — Braunton Burrows — Sea-side Hocks — Marine 
Animals — Rare Plants on the Cliflfs — Snails — Botany of the 
Burrows — Insects — Shells — The Feather Plumularia — Its 
Egg-Vesicles — Young Polypes — Their Development from 
Planules — Structure of the Polype. 

The most remarkable object in this neighbourhood 
is the noble mountain-mass that forms the eastern 
headland of the harbour of Ilfracombe. Its name is 
now spelled and pronounced Hillsborough, but there 
can be little doubt that the essential part of this word 
is cognate with Hele, the village that lies at the foot 
of the hill. The element ''borough" or "burrow" is 
commonly found hereabouts in the names of elevated 
rounded hills, especially such as are tenanted by rab- 


bits. Thus we have Saxon's hurroWy at the entrance 
to Watermouth, and Brauntou Burrows ; and the 
word is continually used as an appellative, synonymous 
with rabbit-warren. 

Hillsborough is sure to catch the eye of a stranger 
from nearly all points of the vicinity. From the 
promenade of Capstone its gigantic form is broadly 
conspicuous ; its loftiness brings its summit into 
view the first of the eminences that surround the town, 
as you mount any of the other hills ; and as you 
Avalk down the steep and narrow street that leads to 
the quay, there is the bold and picturesque mass 
sti'aight in front, filling the field of view. There is 
something particularly grand and noble in its appear- 
ance : the highest point is nearly 500 feet above the 
sea, and from this point there descends to the water's 
edge one broad ample face of cliff" almost perpen- 
dicular, its naked majesty unbroken from top to 
bottom, except by the variations of light and shadow, 
and the slight diversities of the warm brown tints 
that mark its surface. It is the character of the 
friable shale which is the prevalent formation here, to 
form great breadths of surface, and to this I think is 
owing much of that grandeur for which the coast 
scenery of North Devon is so remarkable. 

It is a pleasant, though somewhat toilsome exer- 
cise, to climb to the summit of this hill in summer, 
and enjoy the wide expanse of prospect visible thence. 
I do not mean that you must climb the precipice, for 
you might almost as well essay the side of a church, 
but ascend the grassy slope from the landward side, 
which, though steep, is not impracticable. We go by 


the pleasant path across the Quay Fields, and just 
where this leads into the dusty road, turn down a 
lane for about a dozen yards, instead of going on to 
Hele, clamber over a gate, — and we are on the 

It is near the end of July. The pale blue Scabious 
and lilac Knautia are now in blossom ; the yellow 
spikes of the Agrimony, with battlemented calyx, and 
the rosy flowers of the Eest-harrow, elegant in form 
and beautiful in colour ; these are about the foot of 
the slope. As we get up higher, the turf becomes 
shorter and finer ; the cheerful little Bird's-foot Lotus 
appears ; large patches of Thyme occur here and 
there, as soft as a feather-bed, where the wild bee is 
humming ; the tiny star-like flowers of the yellow 
Ladies' Bedstraw are grouped by hundreds ; and not 
rare is the lovely little Centaury, timidly displaying 
its tufts of pink blossoms, that hardly venture to pro- 
trude their pretty heads above the short turf. The 
yellow Hawkweeds and Cats'-ears are flaunting here 
and there, one species of which, the Mouse-ear, of a 
delicate lemon-vellow tint, is both beautiful and 
curious, for its leaves are studded with fine erect 
hairs of great length and slenderness, and are covered 
on their under surface with a close downy wool. On 
the summit, two kinds of Stone-crop, that known as 
distinctively English fAngliciimJ, and the much 
rarer White f album J are growing profusely about 
the clefts and weather-beaten sides of the rocks; the 
latter distinguished by its large silky blossoms, with 
purple anthers ; the inflated calyxes of the Bladder 
Campion, so prettily marked with delicate pui'ple 


veins, are seen on the abrupt face of the precipice 
itself, and bushes of the Bramble and the Sloe with 
beds of Fern fringe the very yawning edge, giving a 
sense of protection and security more apparent than 

But though I mention these plants and flowers 
first, they are not the first things that claim attention 
here. He would indeed be an enthusiastic botanist 
who could look at flowers, until he had somewhat 
satiated his eyes with the glorious prospect around. 
One knows not where to commence the admiring survey 
— sea-ward, land-ward; up the coast, down the coast; — 
all is magnificent, or beautiful, or both. Let us turn 
westward first ; overlooking the harbour and the town 
of Ilfracombe, the craft in the one, and the streets 
and terraces of the other, looking almost as in a map. 
Here is Lantern Hill just beneath us, crowned with 
the old chapel of St. Nicholas, the supposed patron 
of mariners in the times of Papal ignorance, then 
Compass Hill, and the conical Capstone with its con- 
spicuous walks and its signal -staff*; then come the 
green slopes of the Eunnacleaves, and the seven 
peaks of the Torrs, and the rounded outline of 
Langley Cleve, a loftier elevation than this on which 
we stand : the rugged rocks, and coves of the coast 
line are seen here and there, and far away on the dim 
horizon lies Lundy, blue and hazy, like a sentinel 
keeping his guard at the entrance of the channel. 

Now for a gaze inland. Under our feet is the 
village of Hele, embosomed in gardens and orchards, 
and half hidden by tall and shaggy elms. A valley 
winds up to the left, with a little stream running 


through its wooded bottom, of which, however, we 
can scarcely catch a glimpse here. Another lovely 
vale, that of Chambercomhe, leads off to the right, and 
then curves round parallel with the former ; the sides 
of its hounding hills are covered still more luxuriantly 
with woods of oak and ash, the dark shadows of which 
contrast finely with the sunny fields between, cut up 
by roads and cross-paths like a ground-plan of an 
estate in a land-agent's ofEce. 

We walk on a little wav to the eastern brow of the 
hill, which is less precipitous than the other. Hence 
we look down upon extensive gardens sloping away 
from our feet to the cottages on the road side. Oppo- 
site us rises a broad hill-side covered with fields of 
com and potatoes. Between there is the valley, the 
village-mill, the "one arch'd bridge" crossing the 
brook, and the brook itself now in full view brawling 
and sparkling away to the cove. The sea is breaking 
on the beach in rolling waves ; and the black rocks 
of Eillage Point that runs out in a bristling ridge, 
like a ruined wall, are fringed with a snowy line of 
foam, from the beating surf, whose hollow roar falls 
loud upon the ear. Overtopping the whole is the 
dark outline of Great Hangman, a mountain of regu- 
lar form nearly 1200 feet in height. 

Once more. In another direction we gaze far 
down upon the lovely face of the sea, bounded 
in part by the blue line of the opposite shore run- 
ning out to a dim, almost invisible, point, but for 
a considerable expanse of the horizon so mingling 
with the sky that the separation is with difficulty 


266 A LAND -SLIP. 

Silent and steadfast as the vaulted sky 
The boundless plain of waters seems to lie : — 
Comes that low sound from breezes rustling o'er 
The grass-crowned headland that conceals the shore ? 
No ; 'tis the earth-voice of the mighty sea, 
"Whispering how meek and gentle he can be ! — 


These views are very diverse from each other. I 
know not which most to admire, the wild magnificence 
of the iron-hound coast, the soft luxuriance of the 
fields and woods, or the husy scenes of activity and 
industry, the occupations and homes of human life. 

This hill affords an instructive example of the for- 
mation of a shingie-heach. Ahout two years ago, one 
winter's night, the inhahitants of the town were 
affrighted hy a tremendous and unaccountahle noise, 
and in the morning perceived that a large portion of 
old Hillshorough had fallen. It had before presented 
an uneven and broken slope, covered with bushes and 
herbage nearly to the water; but now they saw all 
this gone, and an abrupt precipice in its stead, as if a 
giant had taken a rick-knife of suitable dimensions, 
and had cut off a huge slice from the top to the bot- 
tom. The fallen mass of debris formed a vast heap 
piled against the side to nearly half the height. Up to 
this time there had been no beach at the foot ; the 
water had been deep to the cliff, and bristled with pro- 
jecting masses and points of rock. 

The action of the waves and the weather soon took 
down the piled heap of rubbish ; and in a very few 
months the whole had assumed its present state. A 
wide beach was formed by the debris settling itself 
into the sea ; the projecting rocks are quite covered 

ANTHEA. 267 

by it ; and the fragments of the fallen mountain are 
already worn into round and smooth pebbles bv the 
rolling surf, so that no one would think on looking at 
it that it had not been a shingle-beach ever since the 


On several occasions I have touched the tentacles 
of Anthea cereus with my fingers, but have never ex- 
perienced any other sensation than the slight adhesion 
common to the Actifiice : not the least stinging. At 
Hele, too, where the species is very numerous in 
shallow rock-pools, a lad gathering periwinkles as- 
sured me that it did not sting, and as a confirmation 
of his assertion, immediately touched the tentacles of 
one before me, with impunity. 

Very fine specimens are common in the pools 
below the Tunnel, near extreme low water. They 
are of tints varying from the most silky emerald green 
to plain drab ; some are of very large size, fully three 
inches in diameter of disk ; much more in expanse of 
tentacles. I perceive, what I had noticed also in 
specimens kept in captivity, that when the animal is 
distended and expanded freely, the tentacles are 
arranged in clusters or tufts of a dozen or twenty, 
which are united at their bases, somewhat hke the 
stock of a very branching shrub. 

Ehrenberg is right in affirming that this species 
has the power of retracting its tentacles. My white 
specimen described in an early page of this volume, 
after having been in my possession more than six weeks 

268 ANTHEA. 

without showing any tendency to do so, at length per- 
formed this feat. On the evening of the 6th of June, 
I ohserved it in the ordinary bell-form assumed by 
Actiniae when at rest, with the tentacles protruded 
only as regards their tips. I immediately touched it 
both on the body and the tentacles, in the hope of 
inducing further contraction, by the irritation; but 
the power seemed to have reached its limit, for the 
animal opened under the annoyance instead of closing. 
But on the next night I observed it quite contracted ; 
the campanulate shape was again assumed, and the 
tentacles were quite withdrawn. I have no reason to 
suppose that the specimen was unhealthy ; it after- 
wards expanded its tentacles, and allowed them to 
hang loosely about, just as before. 

The finest specimens that I have seen are at Ilfra- 
combe, between Capstone and Lantern Hill ; there is 
a group of the fine green variety in a tide-pool, all of 
which expand fully six inches in diameter, with ten- 
tacles four inches long. 

The crimson extremity of one of the tentacles I 
submitted to examination under pressure. The walls, 
which were very mucous, seemed almost wholly com- 
posed of filiferous capsules of a linear form, slightly 
curved, about ^^th of an inch in length. The pro- 
jected thread varied much in length, from four to 
twenty five times that of the capsule. Those of the 
body of the tentacle did not differ from those of 
the tip. 

The numerous convoluted bands with which the 
body is filled, and which are considered to be ovaries, 
are covered with close- set short cilia, the vibration of 


■which produces strong currents in the surrounding 
water, and suffices to carry away the hands themselves 
if they he cut off from the mass. The walls of these 
tuhes seem also to he mainly composed of filiferous 
capsules set in a gelatinous matter ; they agree ex- 
actly with those of the tentacles. 


Who does not know the delightful feehngs excited 
by a walk in the early morning of a hot summer's 
day ? The freshness, the coolness, the thinness of 
the air, the unclouded clearness of the blue sky, the 
warm glow that hangs all about on the horizon, the 
silvery dew that lies upon the grass and herbage like 
a veil of fine muslin, — all combine to produce a buoy- 
ancy and exhilaration of spirits, peculiar to the time. 
I set out on a walk to Lee on such a morning about 
the end of July ; the sun was not yet up, but the long 
Vermillion clouds that stretched across the glowing 
sky in the north-east, told of his presence, like the 
gorgeous standard that floats over the pavilion of 
a king. 

The great black slugs were crawling on the wet 
turf by the road-side ; creatures any thing but attract- 
ive in themselves, and yet, associated as they are with 
the mornings and evenings of the most charming 
season of the vear, not onlv tolerated but even 

Before I had reached the end of the long steep lane 
that terminates in Langiey Open, the sun was climb- 
ing his steeper course, and pouring down such con- 


centrated rays as foretold a calm burning day. The 
hills were covered with a hot haze, in which their 
outlines were tremulously quivering. The air was 
filled with a constant buzz from the two-winged flies 
that were hovering about the hedges ; and the dull 
brown butterflies were flitting along in their dancing 
jerking flight all around. 

] marked the change in the appearance of the hedge- 
rows and banks produced by the progress of the season. 
The spring flowers had all departed ; there were no 
primroses now ; no germander speedwells, no violets, 
no pileworts, scarcely any red campions ; but purple 
loosestrife and the gTeat willow-herb sprang up in the 
ditches ; the long straggling shoots of the brambles 
were covered with flesh-coloured blossoms ; and the 
dense spikes of Teiicrium were every where prominent- 
The abundance of yellow flowers indicated the 
approach of autumn ; the handsome spikes of the 
yellow toad-flax with its curiously spurred flowers 
crowned the tall hedges, and a Potentilla was seen 
here and there on the bank ; but the composite 
flowers that botanists term Syngenesia were chiefly 
charcteristic ; the hawkweeds, and groundsels, and 
ox-tongues, and sow-thistles. 

The foliage of the hedges and all the herbage had 
lost the delicacy of spring, and had grown rank, and 
coarse, and sprawling ; seeds were ripening on all 
sides, and ferns were putting on their under- clothing 
of brown tracery. 

"Not seldom did we stop to -Wtatch some tuft 
Of dandelion seed or thistle's beard. 


That skimmed the surface of the [grassy field] ; 
Suddenly halting now, — a lifeless stand! 
And starting off again with freak as sudden." 


Langley Open is a wide undulating down of great 
elevation : it is, indeed, with the exception of Langley 
Cleve, a large rounded hill on the left, the loftiest 
land in the vicinity. Hillsborough, which is nearly 
500 feet above the sea level, is considerably inferior, 
for the eastern horizon was visible above its summit. 
It was a lovely scene. From my feet the green down 
sloped away a few hundred yards to the edge of the 
precipice, in one direction indented to form a deep, 
fern- covered glen, which appeared as if it would 
aiford an easy access to the beach ; a deceptive 
promise, however; for the adventurer, after wending 
his difficult and hazardous w^ay through the gulley, 
would at length find himself at the margin of a yawn- 
ing chasm, with angular, almost perpendicular, sides, 
and see the inviting little beach, perfectly inaccessible, 
a hundred and fifty feet below him. 

From the position in which I was, however, I could 
not see any portion of the shore except the termina- 
tions of one or two projecting points of rock ; but the 
hollow sound of the surf that was breaking over those 
points, and rolling in among the boulders and pebbles, 
came pleasantly on the ear. The deep blue sea lay 
spread out in wide expanse, studded with shipping 
and bounded by the distant coast : tiny waves ruffled 
up by the western breeze were speckling the surface 
with those snowy masses of foam that mariners call 
"white horses ;" or, to use the poet's simihtude, — 


"Ocean's mermaid shepherdess 
Drives her white flocks afield, and warns in time 
The wary fisherman ;" 

and the dark shadows of the floating clouds were 
chasing each other over the sparkling plain, turning 
the brilliant whiteness of the ships' sails into a dusky 
grey, as they fleeted by. 

Turning, I saw the valley up which I had been 
toiling; the town of Ilfracombe embosomed among 
the hills, the shipping in the harbour, Hillsborough 
and other bluff headlands that distinguish this part of 
the coast receding in succession, until they faded into 
a dim and untraceable line far up the channel towards 
Bristol. But prominent among them was one conical 
mass, attracting notice as well by its superiority of 
magnitude to all the others, as by the simple majesty 
of its uninterrupted outline, rising to a peak from the 
land, and then descending with a similar angle to the 
sea. This mountain, which is between eleven and 
twelve hundred feet above the sea-level, bears the sin- 
gular name of the Hangman, derived from a romantic 
incident which legendary tradition has preserved. 

Many, many years ago, it is said, a man went out 
one night and stole a sheep from the flocks, which 
then, as now, grazed on the slopes of these lofty 
downs. He had killed it, and was carrying it home 
on his back, having tied the legs with a single rope 
which he had passed over his head, and held in his 
hands. As he was crossing the down he came to one 
of the low stone walls which form the fences in this 
part of the country, and being tired he rested his 
burden for a few minutes on the top of the wall. By 

LEE. 273 

some accident, however, the sheep slipped over the 
wall, and the wretched man, heing off his guard, was 
not quick enough to prevent the rope from catching 
him hy the throat, nor could all his efforts then suc- 
ceed in relaxing the pressure. He was found in the 
morning in this position quite dead, the providence 
of God having ordained that thus suddenly he should 
meet the felon's doom, and that his ill-gotten booty 
should itself become his executioner. 

As I turned to pursue my walk, another fine 
example of coast scenery lay before me. The bluff 
and bleak promontory known as the Bull was there, 
projecting its abruptly precipitous head far into the 
blue sea, and between me and it was the little bay of 
Lee, a lovely spot, whose beauty I have before record- 
ed. The cliffs on the opposite side, covered with 
small wood, bushes, fern, and ivy nearly to their foot, 
and inclosing, as if with lofty walls, on all but the 
seaward side, little quiet bathing coves with beaches 
of white sand, attracted my admiration ; surmounted 
as they were with a pretty villa embosomed in 
orchards and surrounded by cultivated fields. A 
flagstaff crowned one of the peaks that rose above 
this scene, and far beyond all, on the distant 
horizon, was stretched the lone blue isle of Lundy. 

A steep and rocky lane wound down from my ele- 
vated position to Lee, where the road runs along the 
beach at the head of the cove. The tide was already 
far out, and revealed the weed-covered rocks, inter- 
sected by narrow channels, through which the little 
stream that flows down from the valley, was pursuing 
its meandering way to the sea, after spreading itself 
over the sandy beach. 

274 A ship's travels. 

I stood beside tlie water-wheel of the mill at the 
end of the lane, and gazed over the wide-spread area 
of broken rocks that I have described on a former 
occasion, before my eye met the sea. It seemed 
incredible that under any circumstances of tempest 
or tide, a vessel of size could be carried to the spot 
where I was standing. Yet if trustworthy persons 
are to be trusted, a brig called the " Wilberforce" was 
a few years ago lifted by the violence of the surf clean 
over the floor of rocks, and lodged high and dry here 
by the side of the mill. The crew, it is supposed, had 
in despair taken to their boat previously, and were all 
unhappily drowned, their precaution proving their 
destruction. The brig was comparatively little in- 
jured; she was bought by a shipwright of Ilfracombe, 
repaired and floated, and has continued ever since to 
trade from the harbour. 

I wended my way, over the rocks and through the 
matted sea-weeds that were crisped and blackened by 
their brief exposure to so burning a sun, to the coves 
that I had seen from tlie heights. The rugged cliffs 
rose perpendicularly like walls, inclosing the most 
charmingly smooth beaches, whose invitations to bathe 
in the clear wave I found irresistible. 

On either side 
The white sand sparkling to the sun ; in front 
Great Ocean with its everlasting voice, 
As in perpetual jubilee, proclaim'd v 

The wonders of the Almighty. 


It was indeed a glorioiTS scene : the majesty of the 
lofty precipices, their rugged sides leading the eye up 


to dark shadowy bowers among the ivy and hushes at 
their summits, combined with the bold outlines of the 
far-receding coast, and the expanse of the sea, to con- 
vey an impression of great grandeur ; an impression 
immarred by the presence of any object mean or little 
or common-place ; for where I stood no trace of the 
proximity of man, of his buildings, or his cultivation, 
was visible, nothing but the works of God himself. It 
was one of those times and scenes in which probably 
most thinking persons have occasionally found them- 
selves, in which we are unfit for study or for action, 
but in which the whole soul seems alive and awake to 
enj oyment. 


When I was at the beach, a shower coming on 
induced me to seek a shelter in a narrow cleft between 
the perpendicular rocks; and being within I found a 
shallow cavern on each side, wliich afforded me suffi- 
cient protection from the rain- drops, though a briny 
shower was dripping freely from the stony roof. Of 
course I could not stand there without looking to see 
if I could do anything in the way of business. From 
one of the caves a narrow hole ran slanting upwards 
many yards, till it opened at the top of the rock and 
let the light streaming in. The floors of both were 
covered with the curious cells of the honeycomb sea- 
worm (Sabella alveolata), all composed of minute 
fragments of gravel imbedded in a delicate mosaic- 
work, of which two broad spoon-like blades projected 
around the mouth of every tube, exquisitely thin and 


delicate in their texture. About the wet walls were 
scattered irregular patches of a scarlet sponge fHali- 
chondria sanguinea) as big as one's hand, or bigger, 
and many specimens of a smaller kind of a yellowish 
colour, more projecting into teat-like eminences (H. 
'paniceaj. Many limpets were about, some of which 
were very evidently stationary inhabitants, notwith- 
standing their power of free locomotion, for the sur- 
face of the rock on which they were seated was in 
many cases eroded to the depth of an eighth of an 
inch, for a space just large enough comfortably to 
embrace the margin of the shell. Other such oval 
depressions, from whence the limpet had either fallen 
or wandered away, showed the spots where this little 
shell-fish had certainly taken up his abode for a time. 
On the roof of one of the caves I observed a 
roundish encrusting substance of a dull olive-brown 
colour, which attracted my curiosity, and induced me 
to attempt its removal. I found 1 could easily get it 
off by forcing the blade of my pocket-knife under it, 
though it adhered with considerable tenacity I after- 
wards observed other patches of the same substance 
in the vicinity, some of which I took away in a man- 
ner less liable to injure its vitality, viz., by chiselling 
off a portion of the rock itself On examining it 
at home, I cannot find that it disagrees with an 
encrusting polype that is found commonly enough 
investing the fronds of the serrated Fucus, and which 
I presume to be the Flustra hisjnda or carnosa of 
naturalists. It forms a rough surface, about one 
twelfth of an inch in thickness, and spreading in all 
directions to an indefinite breadth; some of these 


patches were an inch and a half in width. The micro- 
scope reveals that in this substance, which is gelatinous, 
and of a consistence somewhat between flesh and car- 
tilage, are imbedded numerous oblong cells, set as 
close to each other as they will lie, with the orifices 
slanting outward to the surface, and so arranged as 
that each opening shall be in a line between the two 
that are just behind it ; in other words, disposed in 
quiticimx. The upper and free portion of each cell 
is surrounded by short spines standing up and diverg- 
ing a little, their number varying from one or two to 
five or six. Between them is the opening of the cell, 
a transverse slit, or pair of lips capable of separating 
and of allowing the integuments to be protruded by 
evolution ; the usual mode of expansion among the 
Polyzoan polypes. You would fancy it was the finger 
of a fairy glove, slowly turning inside out ; the mem- 
branous tube lengthening all the while upwards from 
the midst of the spines, and unfolding with more and 
more rapidity, until at length a bundle of fine threads 
appear, and in a moment expand on all sides into a 
most lovely bell of thirty tentacles. Meanwhile 
another and another is protruding in like manner, 
and presently the uncouth skin that looked like a 
piece of rough leather, is adorned every where with 
these beauteous bells as thick as they can stand. 
They appear as if they were spun out of glass thread, 
so crvstalline is their substance: and the double curve 
of their outhne is peculiarly elegant. To add to their 
beauty, every filamentous tentacle is furnished with a 
double series of minute cilia, the rapid play of which 
is perpetually passing up one side from the base to 

B 2 


the tip, and down the other in ceaseless waves, an 
appearance which no familiarity enahles one to look 
on without admiration and delight. Every moment 
too, one and another of the tentacles is thrown inward 
wdth a sudden jerk towards the centre, bending over 
the head, and then gracefully recovers its place. This 
action, which seems odd and unaccountable at first, is 
an instinctive effort to secure food, the great object of 
life, the end for which the protrusion of the polype, the 
bell-like expansion of its tentacles, and the unceasing 
play of their cilia are alike ordained. In order to 
make this action intelligible it is necessary to premise 
that a stationary polype, being unable to seek its food, 
must be provided with means to bring it within reach: 
the cilia accomplish this ; they create an impetuous 
current in a certain definite direction, and form a 
vortex in the surrounding water, whose efi'ects are felt 
to an incredible distance. Any minute floating animal- 
cule near is drawn into this whirlpool, the centre of 
which is the bottom of the polype's bell ; once within 
the circle; it is whirled round and round, descending 
at each gyration till at length it is within the fatal 
circle ; the glassy tentacles encompass it with a wall 
on every side, and it still whirls round with ever 
increasing velocity in the giddy dance, and at length 
is sucked into the yawning abyss at the bottom, the 
gaping throat, which expands with a treacherous 
embrace as the helpless atom enters, and then closes 
over it with a strong muscular contraction, forcing it 
down into the stomach, no more to emerge alive. 
But if, in performing the gyi'ation within the bell, 
the floating atom should be driven too near the 


margin, it might possibly escape tliroiigli the inter- 
stices of the tentacles, for they do not stand in actual 
contact. To prevent the contingency, the cilia of the 
tentacles are endowed with an exquisite sensibility ; 
and if an object but touch the tip of one of these 
most minute hairs, the irritabilitv of the tentacle is 
excited, and it immediately moves inward with that 
sudden jerk, which throws the poor animalcule right 
back into the very whirl of the vortex. 


The next day I set out to visit Braunton, a place 
whose origin is said to date as far back as the third 
century. The road, a little way from Ilfracombe, lies 
between the peak called Carn Top on the right, and 
the lovely valley of Score on the left. Both of these 
were beautiful. The conical hill, with its groves of 
oak, and its top sheeted with furze, is a striking object, 
and always reminds me, from something in its form 
and general appearance, of the represeqgations that I 
have seen of Mount Tabor. From its loftv summit a 
wide and varied prospect is commanded ; it is, how- 
ever, precipitous and difficult to climb. There is 
another reason why its romantic height is seldom 
scaled ; it has the reputation of being haunted. Some 
seventy years ago, a tragical deed of violence was 
committed here. A Jew pedlar, travelling with a 
richer pack than pedlars usually carry at the present 
day, was murdered on this lonely hill. The head and 
a part of the body of the unfortunate man were dis- 


covered on the very sunimit of the hill by an inquisi- 
tive dog; the rest of the mutilated remains were 
afterwards found wrapt in a woollen apron, and con- 
cealed in a brake on the hill-side. The peasantry of 
the neighbourhood believe with an undoubting faith, 
that the ghastly head of the murdered Jew is still to 
be seen, in the gloaming, among the bushes of Carn 

On the opposite side of the road Score presented an 
appearance still more attractive. It is one of the 
loveliest vales in the vicinity. A flourishing farm, 
with its cultivated fields of varied hues, its animals, 
its agricultural operations, its out-buildings, and other 
appurtenances, occupies the bottom, through which 
flows a clear little stream. The sloping sides of the 
hills, projecting irregularly in bold masses into the 
valley, are well wooded ; a feature which greatly con- 
tributes to the beauty of the scene. A pair of 
squirrels, with erected feathery tails, scampered across 
the field as we passed, and took refuge in the shelter 
of these woods. 

Farther or^Trentistowe displayed a similar combi- 
nation of smiling fields and dark woods. The blue 
blossoms of the sheep's-bit studded the banks, and 
there was a wall covered with the Convolvulus arvensis, 
in which the white flowers were so thick, that it 
looked as if a pall of green velvet had been thrown 
over it, studded with silver stars. 

We pass West Down, a pretty village on a hill to 
the left, and come to Buddicombe Barton, where the 
rounded hills are covered with coppice of small oak ; 
out the trees become finer as we approach the bottom. 


The hedges hereabout are composed of oak and hazel, 
and the nuts, which were very plentiful this season, 
hung enveloped in their green coats, in inviting 

The countrv around Braunton is so fertile that it 
is frequently called the Goshen of Devon. A great 
deal of corn is cultivated, and it was more advanced 
to maturity than any that I had seen elsewhere. 
Reaping had just commenced, and the fields were 
lively with the voices of the cheerful husbandmen, 
gathering in the gifts which a bounteous God had so 
richly provided. ''Thou crownest the year with thy 
goodness, and thy paths drop fatness : they drop 
u]3on the pastures of the wilderness, and the little 
hills rejoice on every side : the pastures are clothed 
with flocks : the vallevs also are covered over with 
corn: they shout for joy, they also sing." 

Braunton possesses little to attract notice, except 
the ancient church, which I did not enter. It is said 
to contain some curious carvings in good preser- 
vation ; one of these, in a pannel of the roof, repre- 
sents the singular subject of a sow with a litter of 
pigs ; in allusion to the ridiculous legend, that St. 
Branock, its founder was directed bv a dream to 
build a church on the first spot on which he might 
find a sow and pigs. 

I found in the church-yard a monumental stone, 
elaborately carved, and inscribed ^\ith the following 
epitaph; which I copy for its curiosity, and not 
from any s}Tnpathy with the doctrine inculcated 
in it, of the excellence of celibacy, nor with the per- 
version of scripture which it contains. 


Here lieth interred Mrs. 

Deborah Keene late owner 

of the ISIannor of Braunton 

Arundell in this parish ; shea 

Was bapt'd Eebr' the 24th 1627, 

Lived unmarried and was bur,d 

Decern, the 31. 1694. 

Virginity was had in estimation 

And wont to be observed w^^ veneration 

Above tis still so, single life is led 

In Heav'n none marry nor are marrie<i 

But live Angelick lives, & virgins Crown^ 

All wth their coronets the Lamb surround 

This maiden landlady has one obtain d 

Well tho much sought in marriage still rettain,d 

And now the inheritance undefild obtain, d. 

Haeredes posuere. 

A tall and ancient elm tree in the centre of the 
street, where four ways meet, indicated the spot at which 
I turned off for the sea-side, the immediate ohject of 
mv ramhle. I found the botanical character of the 
neighbourhood very different from that of Ilfracombe. 
The beautiful flowers of the wild succory, large and 
blue, were so abundant along the road-sides between 
Braunton and Santon, as to be quite characteristic. 
The Knautia, and different species of Centaurea^ 
particularly fine, were growing on the banks; and 
from the crevices of a wall near Santon I noticed that 


tufts of the wood horse-tail were springing in con- 
siderable numbers. 

Between Santon and the sea is an extensive tract of 
ground called Braunton Burrows, consisting of more 
than a hundred acres of sand-hills. It seems to have 
been at one time a wooded district ; for a peasant, ex- 
cavating the sand about a century ago, uncovered 
the top of a tree, which proved to be thirty feet in 
height. The origin of the change is doubtless to be 
found in the exposed position of the district, and in 
the character of the adjacent shore. The latter is a 
smooth beach of fine white sand, several miles in 
length, and of great breadth, especially when the tide 
recedes ; the westerly winds, blowing full upon the 
shore, have in the course of ages drifted the fine sand 
upon the land, to such an extent as to cover what 
was once a forest, and reduce it to its present deso- 
late condition. 

These Burrows, so called because they are perfo- 
rated by the holes of myraids of rabbits, present 
many interesting plants to the botanist, some of which 
are of great rarity. The round-headed club-rush 
fSci/'j)Hs lioloschoenus) one of the most uncommon 
of British plants, is found here. 

Before I examined the sands, however, I sought 
the rocks towards Croyde Bay and Baggy Point; for 
it was nearly low water and spring tide, and I wished 
to see what this locality would aflbrd of novelty in the 
littoral animals, which were the chief object of interest 
to me. The sands terminate at this extremity in a 
belt of ridgy shale, occupying the space between the 
sea and low clifi*s of a yellow sandstone, disposed in 


thin horizontal strata, and covered at the top with a 
layer of poor soil, on which harley was growing. 

At the edge of the rocks, near low water mark, the 
points and projections of the shale were covered 
with the curious honey-combed tubes of Sahella 
alveolata ; a covering which gave to the rocks an 
appearance of rounded masses, singularly suggestive 
of the brainstones of tropical seas. Pretty tide-pools 
and deep inlets occurred between the rocks, with 
sandy bottoms ; their sides densely fringed with Ser- 
tularian zoophytes and Polyzoa, sponges and various 
sea-weeds. Actiniae of the species mesemhryanthemum^ 
crassicornis, and gemmacea, I observed ; the last- 
named more than usually fine : the common shore 
shells, whelks and purples, tops and periwinkles, were 
crawling about in profusion. One of these crea- 
tures I shall return to presently. 

I climbed up the sandy cliffs. The great sea- stock 
( Matthiola sinuataj, a rare plant, was numerous on 
these cliffs, now displaying its purple flowers, I was 
struck with the curious large yellow glands on the 
leaves and pods. The samphire in dark green tufts, 
the pretty sea lavender, and the common thrift were 
likewise clothing the cliffs ; and on the top, between 
the barley and the very edge, was a narrow belt of 
•wild plants, which I had scarcely time to look at 
before a peasant came along and cut them all down 
with his merciless scythe. 

There was the rest-harrow, the little centaury, both 
beautiful ; the fragrant yellow-bedstraw ; the woad, 
or wild mignonette ; the brilliant azure flow^ers of 
the viper's bugloss : and the golden heads of the 


ragwort. The large purple musk-thistle was attracting 
iu considerable numbers the pretty burnet hawkmoths, 
which were flying about and sucking the flowers; 
and the herbage generally was crowded with two little 
banded snails, proper to the sea-shore, the cone-snail 
CBulinms acutus) ^ and the navel-snail {Helix vir- 
gataj. The cliff" in one place, rather less precipitous 
than usual, was entirely faced with honeysuckle from 
the top to the bottom. 

As I returned, I spent an hour in examining the 
botany of the Burrows ; though it would require days 
to go over the whole groundj even cursorily. The 
privet grows on the sand-hills in large thickets of 
beautiful glossy green foliage, thick and dense; the 
stems lean away from the sea, and the surface of the 
thickets is as smoothly rounded by the winds as if 
cut by the shears of a gardener. Near the sea was 
the small bugloss (Lycopsis arvensisj, with blossoms 
like those of a forget-me-not growing on a rough 
sprawliug prickly herb. I found the rare musky 
stork's bill, a plant with little pretension to beauty, 
nor does its rank odour please me, though it is said 
by Sir William Hooker to be cultivated in gardens 
for its scent. The viper's bugloss was again numer- 
ous, and the contents of its nectariums were evidently 
attractive to the bees of diff'erent species, which were 
thronging around the spikes, half-burying themselves 
in the blossoms, with a shrill deprecatory hum. Two 
species of spurge, Euphorhia j)eplus, and the much 
finer and more uncommon E. Fortlandica, occurred. 
That singular plant, the prickly saltwort, was found 
near the sea, and faither inland the fuller's teaseh 


which I had seen also on the road. A few tufts of 
the stinking iris, so common in South Devon, but 
scarce almost everywhere else, were growing near the 
sea, but not in flower ; and the more elegant yellow 
iris was abundant in a ditch that bounds the Burrows 
interiorly, with other common hedge-plants. 

The sand of the hills was beaten quite hard on the 
seaward side by the force of the drift ; but inwardly 
it was soft and loose : great tracts were covered with 
a slender rush of a glaucous hue, but as I saw none 
in flower I do not know the species. The ragwort 
also covers extensive areas. Towards the interior 
side I passed through a large tract of the brake-fern, 
with an under-growth of rest-harrow, and a few plants 
of the yellow mountain violet in blossom. These I 
think were pretty nearly all the plants that fell under 
my observation, except such as were common every- 
where. Of animal life I did not notice much. Bab- 
bits indeed were numerous, popping out of their holes 
at every turn, gazing at the intruder for an instant, 
and then jumping away with elevated rump and tail. 
Two insects, an Asilus and a Cicindela, were taking 
short impatient flights over the sand ; singularly alike 
in manners, though of widely difi'erent orders ; the 
one a two-winged fly, the other a beetle. On the 
sand and beneath its surface, were thousands of shells 
of the common garden-snail ; the heat and the dry- 
ness had, as it were, embalmed them, and they 
appeared in the finest preservation. One might have 
been tempted to think, but for the familiar form and 
pattern of the marking, that it, was some foreign 
species of superior beauty, for the dark colours were 


changed to a fine chestnut-red, while the lighter parts 
had become pure ivory-white. 


A tuft of weed that I had pulled off from the side 
of one of the rock-pools, and brought home screw- 
ed up in a bit of paper, was almost covered with the 
elegant plumes of Flumularia pinnata. I put it into 
sea-water as soon as I arrived at home, after it had 
been out of water about eight hours, carried within 
my hat. When I came to examine it, many of the 
Polypes appeared alive, though contracted. Many of 
the lower stalks were nearly denuded of branches, 
except at their tips, but were densely crowded for the 
most of their length, with the ovigerous vesicles. 
(Plate XVII, fig. 4.) These are placed in a single 
series, on the upper side of the arching stems, as 
thickly as they can stand, about twenty-five on each. 
By single series I mean only that they are all seated 
on one side of the stem, and all point the same way, 
(with an occasional exception) ; for they are two, 
three, or even four abreast. Their substance is hya- 
line, but the contents are opaque and flesh-coloured. 
Their shape is sub -oval, larger at the tip, but the 
sides are fluted so as to form about six rounded 
angles and as many furrows. Near the tip several 
divergent tubercles or blunt spines are given ofl". 
Pig. 5 represents a lateral view of one; Fig. 6 a 
vertical, from a very good view : the opaque ova in 
the middle. 

The tuft alluded to I put into a glass vessel made 


of the cliimney of an ordinary lamp, witli tlie bottom 
closed by a plate of glass : this was about half-full of 
sea-water. In three or four days, examining curso- 
rily with a lens, I was surprised to see the bottom 
crowded with young poh^^es growing erect from every 
part. They were there by hundreds ; I detached a 
few for more particular examination. Each consisted 
of an irregular dilated glassy plate, adhering to the 
bottom : from some point of which sprang up erect a 
slender tube, with one or two joints, and terminating 
in a cell of the same form as those above described. 
The medullary core permeated the tube, and was 
developed into a perfectly- formed polype inhabiting the 
cell, and freely expanding from it. The tube, the cell 
and the polype, were of the same dimensions as in the 
adult. Some of the cells already shewed, in the form 
of a tubercle budding from their bases, the com- 
mencement of a new joint of the lengthening poly- 
pidom. (Fig. 13.) 

Along with these, on the floor of the glass-vessel, 
were many minute animalcules of an opaque white 
hue, somewhat j)lanaria-Yike, which crawled slowly 
and irregularly, protruding the anterior portion of 
the body in a blunt point, but often contracting the 
whole outline into a sub-globose form. (Figs. 7, 8, 
and 9). These worm-like animalcules I found to bo 
the primal form of the young polype, and though I 
have not been able to trace the metamorphosis 
through every stage of its development in the same 
individual, the facts I have observed leave it indu- 

I took two plates of thin glass, and suspended 


tliem by threads in tlie vessel, near tne bottom, hori- 
zontally ; with a view to obtain some of the embryos 
rooting themselves thereon, which I might afterwards 
take out, to watch their progressive development under 
the microscope. Meanwhile I secured the first step 
in the inquiry, by opening with needles some of the 
crowded vesicles of the adult polypidom, from which 
I obtained some of the minute white worms. In two 
or three days I drew out the plates of glass, and put 
them in shallow cells of sea-water, fit for the stage of 
the microscope. T found upon them the young 
animals in various stages. Some of the worms were 
yet vagrant, and crawled freely about the surface : 
others had selected their position and were adherent, 
but still retained the power of motion, to such a 
degree as enabled them to change their form by pro- 
truding certain portions of their outline : others were 
contracted into a globule fixed and changeless, with 
the matter produced in the form of a creeping rootlet 
(Fig. 10). 

The next stage that T observed, was that in which 
the adherent mass had become shelly ; as I presume, 
for the marginal portions were perfectly transparent 
and colourless ; and the opaque granular matter had 
retired to the centre, where, irregular in form, it had 
given rise to a tube (Fig. 11). This tube had 
already formed one joint: its extremity was closed 
and rounded, and had not yet begun to dilate into a 
cell. The medullary matter, proceeding from the 
granular mass at the base, passed through the lower 
portion of the tube as a central cord, but completely 
filled the terminal moiety. Another specimen had 

c 2 


proceeded so far as the formation of the cell, the bot- 
tom of Tv'hich was filled with the granular matter as 
yet amorphous, no trace of the polype being yet dis- 
coverable (Fig. 12). This was the most matured 
phase of the development that aj)peared on the expe- 
rimenting plates of glass; but the transition from 
this state to that of the young polypes already de- 
scribed at the bottom of the vessel is short and obvious ; 
and the progress from one of them to a perfect poly- 
pidom is but a matter of increase and aggregation. 
There is, however, a hiatus in this chain ; I should 
have particularly washed to see one or more specimens 
between the condition of the adherent globule, and 
that of the formed and growing tube : but of this 
intermediate stage my glass plates presented no spe- 
cimen. And whether the water in the shallow stage- 
troughs, to which I removed the plates for microscopic 
examination, afforded insufficient nutriment, I know 
not ; but I could not find that any individual speci- 
men continued to grow after the removal from the 
larger vessel; and they shortly gave evident tokens of 
death and decay. 

In examining a cluster of the same polype from the 
Bathing Pool, I was struck with the great similarity 
of the expanded disk to that of the embryo of Lao- 
medea geniculata. I have figured a segment at fig. 3. 
I cannot find any trace of the so-called auditory cap- 
sules. The tentacles are very distinctly armed with 
whorls of tubercles, some of which have two, and 
even three points. They are as it were jointed, being 
crossed at regular intervals by well-marked transverse 
lines (i. e. planes). The centre of the disk is protu- 

THE DISK. 291 

berant ; and there is a dark granular disk, ^vliicli is 
sometimes contracted considerably within the circum- 
ference, and at others expanded so as to reach beyond 
the webs which connect the bases of the tentacles. Fig. 
2 shews a well expanded polype, as seen laterally: there 
is a neck below the disk, and then a flask-shaped 
body ; this latter fills the narrow limits of the cell, so 
that the polype has no power of withdrawing itself; 
it can do no more when alarmed than draw the tips 
of its tentacles together, and contract them into a 
ball ; and this it does with that spasmodic grasping 
clutching sort of action that I noticed in the young of 
Laomedea geniculata. A beautifully distinct circu- 
lation of granules in a fluid was seen pervading the 
medulla of the stem and branches to the cells. The 
whole polypidom was mnch infested with fine radiating 
fibres, doubtless parasitic; and with some Vaginicolm. 
I counted seventeen tentacles in one, nineteen in 


A Visit to Smallmouth Caves — Chasm formed by a Rock-slip — 
View of Samson's Bay — Samson's Cave — Smallmouth — 
Natural Tunnel— View of Combmartin Bay — Brier Cave — 
Abundance of Animals — The Twining Campanularia — Form 
of its Cells— The Polypes— The Egg-Vesicles— Birth of a 
Medusoid — Its Form and Structure — Tentacles — Eyes — Cir- 
culating Canals -Alternation of Generations — Ride towards 
Barricane — A Showery Journey — Lee — Damage Farm — A 
romantic Dell— Devonshire Wells — Rockham Bay — White 
Pebbles — Morte Stone — Shipwreck — Gallant Exploit — Morte 
— Tomb of De Tracy — Approach of a Storm— Kestrels- 
Parasites on a Crab — The Bristle Plumularia — Birth of its 
Young — Dissolution — The Lobster's Horn Coralline — Second- 
ary Cells — Suggestion of their Purpose — Egg- Vesicles — 
Birth of the Planule — Its Development into the Polype-form 
— Death. 


Aug. 2nd. — I paid another visit to Watermouth 
and Smallmouth, principally for the purpose of seeing 
the perforations and caverns of the latter place. The 
road thither was of course the same as when I had 
traversed it three months before, hut the almost entire 
change of the accompaniments made the effect differ- 
ent. The flowers that had adorned the banks in May 
had left scarcely a representative, and comparatively 
few new ones had sprung up in their place. Of these 
few, however, one of the prettiest was the perfoliate 


yellow-wort, which, though I had not met with it else- 
where, was somewhat numerous in Hockey Lane above 
Hele. The enchanter's night- shade, the ey eh right, and 
the centaury were likewise growing here; and near 
Watermouth the mountain willow-herb, and the com- 
mon vervain were numerous. 

At the most elevated part of the coast-line where 
the down comes to a precipitous edge some hundreds 
of feet above the sea, there is a narrow but deep cleft 
in the land, into which we can gaze down from the 
road. It is an awfal chasm, with nearly perpendicular 
sides ; and was formed, as I was told, in one night, 
about a year ago, by the sudden falling in of the earth. 
There was still the hedge running along the margin 
of the precipice, interrupted by the chasm, which had 
cut it right through. These land-slips are bv no 
means of rare occurrence, and they frequently alter 
and modify the appearance both of the cliffs and of 
the sea-margin below. 

A little way beyond this point the traveller looks 
down upon a cove called Sampson's Bay ; it is girt in 
with rocky cliffs of great massiveness and wild gran- 
deur, too abrupt and perpendicular to be scaled, even 
by the most expert climber. An ample cavern yawns 
on the western side of the bay, into whose depths, as 
the tide was high, the surf was dashing, with a roar 
that rivalled the discharge of artillery. I thought of 
the fine simile of Moore ; — 

" Beneath, terrific caverns gave 

Dark welcome to each stormv wave. 
That dash'd, like midnight revellers, in.' 


This, however, was not one of the caverns of which 
I was in search. They are situated at Smallmouth, 
about a mile farther to the eastward. The stream 
that runs in front of Watermouth Castle, expands into 
a little pond, the water of which is made to pour down 
a square well of stone, from the bottom of which it 
escapes again as a brawling brook. Just at this 
point, a path leads off from the main road, which 
presently conducts the traveller to a steep descent 
into a sort of glen, rough with boulders, and unplea- 
sant to walk in, from the admixture of sand and mud 
wdiich forms the bottom. This glen is the head of a 
long and narrow inlet, confined between precipices, 
and up which the sea enters, to an extent which 
varies with the condition of the tide, A stranger 
might readily leave this cove with the impression that 
he had seen all it had to display ; but if he turn into 
a narrow opening in the rock on the right hand, he 
will be rewarded by a sight of more than ordinaiy 
sublimity and beauty. A great natural tunnel opens 
before him, perforated in the solid rock. The roof is 
nearly horizontal ; but the sides spring out into 
angular groins and projecting buttresses. The interior 
of this archway is as dark as night ; its obscurity 
being heightened by contrast with the brilliancy of 
the sunlight, that illumines the scene without, visible 
at the far end. The prospect beheld through this 
cavern is a lovely one, and reminds the beholder of a 
sunny picture, set in an ample black frame. His eye 
ranges across the beautiful bay of Combmartin, on 
the surface of which, when I looked at it, the fresh 
breeze was raising hillocks of foam upon the green 


water, that flashed and sparkled in the sun. On the 
opposite side were the red cliffs of the Hangman, 
with their verdant turfy crown, sloping down to an 
abrupt point ; the caves and various irregularities of 
their sides distinctly visible, though in hues softened 
and mellowed by the distance. The floor of the 
cavern is rough with weedy rocks, on which the foot 
finds but a slippery and precarious hold ; among 
these lie shallow tranquil pools, tranquil because pro- 
tected from the wind without, and reflecting, with 
mirror-like precision, the form of the distant coast, 
and everv white cloud that skims over the azure 

If the visitor now retrace his steps, and, crossing 
the cove, examine the rock on the opposite side, he 
will find a long perpendicular fissure just wide enough 
to permit him to squeeze his body through. After 
pursuing this gallery for a score yards or so, he finds 
himself in an area, open to the sky and leading away 
to the right and left. On either hand is another 
natural archway : that to the right resembles the one 
just described (except that it is narrower), and looks 
out upon the same scene. The one to the left is 
essentially similar, but as it leads inland, it may be 
traversed ; and the explorer will find himself, at the 
end of the arch, at the bottom of a deep circular pit, 
about as wide as an ordinary room. The sides are 
precipitious, about thirty or forty feet high, and 
fringed all round at the top with matted brambles, 
whence the hole has acquired the name of Brier Cave. 
At first there seems no mode of escape from this 
prison, except through the gallery by which the 


visitor entered ; but a careful examination reveals a 
narrow pathway among the buslies, which climbs 
up one side, to daylight and liberty on the downs 

These natural perforations are among the most 
curious phenomena which a visitor can see in the 
vicinity of Ilfracombe ; as the tunnels which lead to 
the public baths are the most interesting of the works 
of art: though, from the readiness with which they 
may be overlooked by strangers, even when close to 
them, many go away without seeing them. 

To the littoral naturalist these caves and the sur- 
rounding rocks present a fruitful field of observation. 
The surface is broken and uneven, and covered with 
tide-pools of varying level, most of which are richly 
stored with plants and animals. The water's edge at 
low tide is strewn with stones, not difficult to lift, 
beneath which are found Crustacea, Annelides, and 
Star-fishes, in abundance. The perpendicular sides 
of the bounding rocks themselves, and the interior 
of the fissures, are studded with Madrepores, many of 
which are fine specimens both for size and colour; 
these are exposed and readily accessible at the lowest 


From the rocks around Smallmouth Caves, I ob- 
tained a little tuft of that very elegant Sertularian 
zoophyte, Campanularia voluhilis. The cells were 
numerous, and many of them were inhabited by their 
polypes, expanding freely in full health and vigour. 


FHCfutte dfletJvth 

frviud iyKuIlmaru/e/S^^'oIlBn, 

:aivLpanulafja volubilis. 


The genus is distinguished from Laomedea by the 
cells being placed on long ringed footstalks, wliich 
spring in an irregular crowded manner from a 
creeping adherent stem. The stem in this instance 
had twined about the slender fronds of a small 

The cells in this species are shaped like an old- 
fashioned ale-glass, being long and narrow, with a 
slight constriction just above the point of their con- 
nexion with the footstalk ; and at this constriction, a 
sort of false bottom, or diaphragm, runs across, which 
is perforated with a narrow hole in the centre. (See 
Plate XVIII, fig. 1). The margin is cut into about 
eleven deep equal teeth, and expands in a very slight 
degree (fig. 2). The stalk has usually about six or 
eight well marked rings at each extremity, the middle 
portion being smooth. The walls, both of the stalk 
and cell, are thin, and perfectly transparent and colour- 
less ; the former is permeated, but not filled, with the 
medullary core, through which a fluid circulates, 
carrying minute granules wdth a quivering jerking mo- 
tion. This core is exceedingly attenuated to pass 
through the perforated diaphragm of the cell, after 
which it merges into the body of the polype. 

The polype (fig. 1.) is slender (when protruded); 
dilated at the base into a sort of foot which spreads 
over the diaphragm, and widening still more at the 
top, where it fills the mouth of the cell, and gives 
origin to about twenty (less or more) slender tenta- 
cles, roughened with whorls of tubercles, and set in 
two or three series. In the central space surrounded 
by the tentacles, a large fleshy mouth protrudes, 


somewhat funnel shaped, but capable of great alter- 
ation of form. Its lips are endowed with the power 
of protrusion and contraction to a great degree, and 
appear to be very sensitive : they are pushed out, and 
turned in and out, and modified in various ways, with 
much energy. Its walls are thick and granular, and 
the cavity which they inclose can be traced for a con- 
siderable distance down the body. 

Among the foot-stalks were several of the egg-vesi- 
cles springing from the common stem. (Figs. 3 & 4). 
They are somewhat like the cells in form, but are 
about twice as large, both in height and diameter. 
They are pointed at the bottom, and are attached to 
the stem by a very short bulbous foot-stalk, which 
joins the vesicle on one side, a little above the point, 
which thus forms a sort of spur. The walls of the 
vesicle are transparent, but corrugated with many 
coarse irregular rings, and the mouth is somewhat 
trumpet-shaped, though not quite so wide as the 
middle part. The core, which permeates the stem, 
sends ofi" a branch into the vesicle through the foot- 
stalk, where it is swollen into a little node. It then 
passes through the centre of the vesicle, being slender, 
but dilates at the extremity, and becomes commensu- 
rate with the shelly mouth, to the margin of which it 
is adherent. Thus it closely resembles in appearance 
the polype-inhabitant of a cell, supposing the latter to 
be divested of its proboscis and tentacles. It is 
however seen in this condition, only after it has 
performed the office for which it was made. Ordina- 
rily it is swollen into three or more oval knobs, of 
which the outermost are the largest; through the 


development witliin its tubular walls of as many- 
embryos. These, as they develop themselves in 
succession, show evidence of life, in their contraction 
and change of form ; the outmost one sometimes 
occupying the mouth of the fleshy duct and filling its 
diameter, at others retiring to some distance, leaving 
the duct long and slender, between the extremity and 
the embryo. 

I have not seen the escape of the embryo, but per- 
ceiving that one and another had escaped, I searched 
the water of the minute glass box in which the animal 
was kept. There I found the little new-born creatures 
I was seeking, but in a shape that surprised me not a 
little. A moment's recollection, however, of what I 
had seen as the progeny of the allied Laomedea^ 
diminished my astonishment. (See Plate XIX.) 

The embryo, then, of Camp, voluhilisi^ a gelatinous 
globose sac, about -^ inch in diameter, somewhat 
orange-shaped, perfectly circular in vertical aspect 
(tigs. 1 and 2), but flattened at the top, and as it were 
cut off" at the bottom (fig. 3). The whole surface is 
smooth until we arrive at this truncate bottom, round 
the edge of which runs a tubular cord or canal of wrink- 
led gelatinous substance, through which, as I believe, 
circulates a fluid. At least, I perceive minute clear 
globules, one here and there, in different parts of the 
canal, playing backward and forward with a dancing 
movement, which indicates some fluid in motion there, 
though I am not sure that it strictly circulates. The 
truncate surface sometimes appears slightly funnel- 
shaped, the sides inclining inwardly to a central 
orifice, larger or smaller at the will of the animal, by 


contraction or expansion. No thickened edge marks 
the orifice, which can he discerned only hy delicate 
manipulation. The whole of this truncate surface is 
marked with the most evanescent concentric corru- 

We return now to the marginal canal. At each of 
four equidistant points, quadrating the circle, there 
springs from the canal a filamentous tentacle of great 
length, with a hulhous root. When extended it may 
be about twice as long as the diameter of the whole 
globe, but it is usually much contorted ; and especial- 
ly when swimming, the whole filament being then so 
contracted and twisted together, as to appear only an 
oblong knob, very little larger than the bulb alone in 
its ordinary state. The filament is distinctly tubular 
throughout; and the bulb has an enlarged cavity pro- 
portioned to its size, which evidently communicates 
with the marginal canal (Fig. C). The bulb is filled 
with a yellowish granular matter, which does not extend 
into the tube of the filament. The walls of the filament 
are composed of oval grains (filiferous capsules, no 
doubt) set in a clear glairy matter, transversely to 
the length, and radiating from the centre, their tips 
projecting on all sides. Towards the extremity, the 
surface becomes more and more tubercled and rugged, 
and at length is studded with sharp conical points 
irregularly set : the very tip being slightly dilated 
into a rounded bulb (Fig. 7). 

I observe that the globe no sooner is at rest by 
touching the bottom of the vessel, that it unfolds and 
extends the four filaments, still however corrugated 
and contorted : probably for the purpose of entwining 

riait _xzx. 

PNiross.- litl ft hJh . 

Printed byJiiiilmixndiLi. WaJtcn 


THE EYES. 301 

around any objects they may meet with, and so moor- 
ing the animal. That contact stimulates the tentacle 
to grasping I infer from the frequency with which I 
see one or more inserted into the central orifice of 
their own umbrella, and bent round the edige. The 
tips, probably, accidentally get in, in roving about, 
when the touch of the edge stimulates the filament to 
bend tightly round it. 

Midway between each pair of tentacles, and thus 
quadrating the circle at four other points, the mar- 
ginal canal carries on^ts exterior side a little swelling, 
within the cavity of which are contained half a dozen 
or more minute granules, in which I could not detect 
any motion. Its cavity is isolated from the course of 
the canal, which can be traced independently. (See 
fig. 4). And close to this bulb, on each side, project- 
ing from the interior of the canal, but sessile thereon, 
is a globular capsule furnished with a narrow waved 
veil or membrane hanging from its interior surface, 
and formed apparently of the same substance as the 
canal, but containing in its centre a spherule, trans- 
parent, colourless, and of high refracting power — a 
crystalline lens, in fact (Fig. 5). The vesicle which 
carries this spherule is furnished with a very minute 
tubercle, projecting from its edge towards the interior 
of the animal. 

These vesicles, of which there are eight altogether, 
I should without hesitation have set down as visual 
organs, but for the weight of authority which has 
pronounced them organs of hearing. Mr. Busk, how- 
ever, in his memoir on a species of Thcmmcmtias 
(Trans. Micr. Soc. 1850, p. 22 j, has given what ap- 

D 2 


pear strong reasons in favour of the former conclusion. 
Whether the intermediate cavities containing granules, 
be auditory organs, or rudimentary tentacles, I can- 
not determine. It is interesting to see in this case, as 
well as in that of the Feather Plumularia, before de- 
scribed, the presence of eyes in the free roving Medu- 
soid, while they are absent in the fixed and stationary 
Polype. Where these organs are of service, they are 
provided ; where they would be useless, they are not 
only denied, but obliterated. The very same phe- 
nomena are presented by the tubicolous, and therefore 
stationary, Rotifera, as Steplianoceros, Floscularia, 
&c., which are sightless when adult, but have two 
brilliant ruby-like visual specks in the active and 
swimming young. How beautifully such disci'imina- 
tions show the minute, individualising care exercised 
by the Only Wise God in creation! 

From the lateral aspect of the globe, carefully de- 
picted at Fig. 3, I infer that the substance of which 
it is composed varies in thickness in diiferent parts ; 
being thickest at the top, and thinnest towards the 
marginal canal. From the centre of the roof, hangs 
down freely within the cavity an organ of granular 
flesh, somewhat trumpet-shaped and four-sided, its 
free extremity forming four thickened lips, capable of 
much alteration of form, and apparently very sensi- 
tive. From its base diverge four canals, passing ap- 
parently along the interior of the globe, and joining 
the marginal canal at the four points where the bulbs 
of the filaments originate. These four canals are 
permeated by a circulating colourless fluid ; for at a 
point about midway in their course, where each en- 


larges into a little sac, I perceived two minute granules, 
which quivered and jerked about in a vacillating but 
rapid motion, just as if under the influence of a strong 
current, they not being free to be carried along by it. 

The substance of the globe carries many scattered 
oval bodies, apparently imbedded m it. They are 
very minute, are set with their long diameter always 
pointing from the centre, but are not arranged re- 

I need scarcely say that this embryo of the Sertu- 
larian Zoophyte, Campanula7'ia,\\\<d that oi Laomedea 
before described, is a veritable Medusa ; in no essen- 
tial point to be distinguished from those Naked-eyed 
forms so exquisitely figured and described by Pro- 
fessor Edward Forbes, in his beautiful Monograph. 
And the case is illustrative of one of the most startling 
and most interesting series of facts that modern science 
has discovered, those connected with the Alternation 
of Generations. Here is a fixed and celled Polype, 
giving birth to free-swimming Meduste ; hereafter 
w^e shall have occasion to describe a Medusa produc- 
ing an embryo which presently assumes the form of a 
fixed and celled Polype. In both cases, the law ap- 
pears to be established, that there is an alternate put- 
ting on of the two forms by successive generations ; 
neither the one nor the other being a phase in meta- 
morphosis, like the caterpillar, and chrysalis of a 
butterfly, but each form producing the other in the 
way of generation ; and thus, as has been cleverly 
said, any one individual is not like its mother or its 
daughter, but is exactly like its grandmother and its 



My first attempt to see Barricane was a failure. 
The weatlier liad been unsettled for some time, and 
though it gave a treacherous promise of truce when I 
set out, the cessation of hostilities lasted only long 
enough to beguile me as far as the romantic valley of 
Lee, when the artillery of the clouds began to batter 
away at my head, with the energy of a garrison that 
has reserved its missiles, to pour them on the besiegers, 
when almost at the summit of the scaling ladders. 

A hasty run for the nearest tree ; — half an hour's 
tedious idleness under the drip of some poplars ; — fre- 
quent longing glances at the sky ; — and an occasional 
sally out into the rain to take an obsei*vation of the 
weather to windward. Black and threatening enough 
it looked, especially over the sea, where the sky was 
filled with ragged pillars driving perpendicularly along 
in misty grandeur ; or, as the poet has said, with the 
torn fragments of a canopy : — 

" The day is low'ring ; — stilly black 
Sleeps the grim wave, while heaven's rack, 
Dispers'd and wild, 'twixt earth and sky 
Hangs like a shatter 'd canopy." 


I had taken the precaution to cover the saddle of 
my steed, when I alighted for shelter, with an im- 
promptu cloth of weeds from the ditch, binding it on 
with a flexible root of ivy snatched from an old wall ; 
so that when I mounted again after the shower, I had 
the satisfaction of a tolerably dry seat. 


At lengtli patches of blue sky, as brightly and 
purely blue as if it had never been sullied by a cloud, 
began to open, and grow, and coalesce, until the storm 
was fairly put to the rout, and fled from the aerial 

I ventured to proceed. On the steep road up from 
the cove the traces of the shower were still strong. 
The rain ran in gutters and ruts, and hung in drops, 
like thousands of diamonds, from the brambles and 
cornels of the hedges. The lovely white bindweed 
presented its beautiful trumpet-blossoms to the sun, 
as smilingly as though not a drop had fallen on them. 
The fields, however, gave sadder proofs of the vio- 
lence of the storm ; for large breadths of the brown 
wheat, more than ready for the sickle, were beaten 
down, and laid by the rain ; and the precious grains, 
shed out, were lying on the sodden earth by handfnls. 

Thus I came to a farm bearing the inauspicious 
name of Damage. Streams of muddy water covered 
with brown froth poured across the road; the sky 
looks black again ; the clouds have rallied, and are 
mustering to renew the assault; they gain ground 
upon the azure, and now they have fairly overpowered 
it. An archway of the farm-buildings ofi'ers a kindly 
shelter, and I dismount, despite the growlings of a 
suspicious mastiff, the Cerberus of the place. The 
view to sea-ward, over Bull Point and the neigh- 
bouring head-lands, is magnificiently grand, almost 
worth the disappointment and the wetting to behold. 
A dark dim veil of mist passes over the sea, gradually 
enveloping and concealing every thing, and spreads 
away to leeward. The rain descends, first in great 


drops, then in bucketfuls, then in drops again, — and 
the shower is over. 

Thence through a little shady dell, where the wet 
branches of the trees hang down so low that they 
deposit their drops upon the traveller, as he brushes 
past them ; — a romantic little dell, half-encircled by a 
rivulet, now swollen into a turbid torrent; and I 
come to a place where the stream pours over a wall 
in two tiny cascades, each of which is received into a 
high trough, for the benefit of thirsty cattle. It is 
now a hi]ly road, and a winding one, across fields, and 
through a multitude of gates, to Houseworth, another 
farm. Here a little object struck my eye quite cha- 
racteristic of Devon. One of those enclosed wells, 
which we so often see bv the road-side, was here 
erected in the very centre of the highway, or rather 
in the spot whence three ways diverge. It was built 
with more than ordinary care, a regular four-sided 
house, except that the front was open, and covered 
with a bungalow roof, as tidily as a cottage. It was 
pleasant to look in, and see the water beautifully 
clear and pure, shadowed over with ferns of various 
kinds, depending from the walls all round the interior, 
the nakedness of the stone above the brim of the 
water being concealed by a thick drapery of liverwort 
of the most refreshing greenness. 

Still over cultivated hills, now commanding a fine 
viev\^ of the sea-ward horizon, and Lundy Island. I 
arrive at Morte ; but before entering the village, I 
wished to explore Eockham Bay, situate about a mile 
to the right. Dismounting, therefore, I waded through 
the wet Litter of a farm-yard, and along a narrow 


zigzag road, tlirougli fields, to the edge of the cliffs, 
and by a footpath down to their base. The wild and 
romantic bay opens before me ; but the sky again 
threatens, and compels a search for refuge. I find a 
little cavern that looks as if it had been made on pur- 
pose, and get into it just as the first drops fall. 

It is a narrow indenture of the rocky const, as wild 
and silent as a desert island in the midst of the 
Pacific ; enclosed with lofty and inaccessible cliffs of 
hard blue slate, hollowed into manv small and shallow 
caverns. The floor of the cove, if I may be allowed 
the expression, is of the same slate; there is indeed 
a coating of sand in some places, and of pebbles in 
others ; but everywhere the slate crops out in blue 
ridges and hillocks, rubbed smooth (though still un- 
even) by the constant action of the waves. Farther 
out the rock forms long bristling ridges running into 
the sea, draped in their lower parts with yellow sea- 
weed and tangle, and holding in their angular hollows 
many a perpetual pool of still water ; while here and 
there, between the ridges, are lanes of the finest 
yellow sand. In some spots there are extensive beds 
of minute pebbles, most of them of quartz of dazzling 
whiteness, and in general not larger than children's 
sugar-plums, which they closely resemble in form 
and colour. 

The most absolute solitude reigns here : no hamlet 
is nearer than Morte ; no fisherman's hut stands upon 
the shore ; no net is spread upon the sands to dry ; 
no boat hes at anchor in the offing. One might 
wander beneath these blue cliffs for days, — 


Hearing no voice save of the Ocean-flood, 
Which roars for ever on the restless shores ; 

Or, visiting their solitary caves. 
The lonely sound of winds, that moan around, 

Accordant to the melancholy waves. 

Kehama, XV. 8. 

The southern boundary of this Bay is formed by a 
promontory, which juts out far into the sea ; the 
angle where the coast abruptly bends to the south- 
ward. From the point, a long line of sunken rocks 
projects, at the extremity of Avhich is an insulated 
rock, called Morte Stone, or the Eock of Death. 
This name is supposed to owe its origin to ancient 
Norman mariners, and to have been given in allusion 
to the extraordinary fatality of this iron-bound shore. 
Partly owing to the form of the coast, partly to the 
fogs which so frequently prevail in winter, but chiefly 
to the set of the currents, this rock has always been 
infamous in the annals of shipwreck. Scarcely a 
winter passes, without one or more vessels striking 
upon it ; and to touch it is almost equivalent to 
immediate destruction. The months of Januarv and 
Februarv of last vear witnessed the loss of five vessels 
on this point. One of them was the occasion of a 
daring and successful exploit of which this little Bay 
was the scene. 

It was on the seventeenth of the former month, 
that the ship " Thomas Crisp," of Bristol, struck on 
the Morte Stone in a thick fog, and immediately went 
to pieces. The crew, ten in number, had recourse to 
their boat, though ignorant of the character of the 


coast, and unable to discern it through the fog, 
although so near. 

By God's good providence it happened that the 
"Cornwall" steam-packet was passing at the time, on 
her way to Hayle. Captain Vivian, her commander, 
heard what at first he took for the wailing cry of a 
sea-bird. The sound was, however, repeated; and, 
straining his eyes in the gathering dusk of evening, 
he saw a black speck. The experienced seaman ob- 
served that no spray broke over it, whence he con- 
cluded that the object was afloat, and that it was pro- 
bably some ship's boat. 

It was five o'clock, a January evening ; the sky ob- 
scured with fog, and a heavy gale blowing from the 
westward : a narrow bay was before him, which he 
knew to be bristling with sunken and exposed rocks, 
among which the sea was breaking and foaming, like 
a field covered with snow. But humanity called, and 
the gallant commander, supported by his willing crew, 
took no counsel with fear, but at once resolved on the 
perilous adventure of steering his steamer into Eock- 
ham Bav. With much labour and danger he sue- 
ceeded in rescuing the nine ship-wrecked men, one of 
the number having been drowned in leaving the ship ; 
but so dangerous was his position, the rocks not al- 
lowing him to turn his vessel, that he was obliged to 
hack her out of the hay. 

I return along the cliff'-path to Morte, an ancient 
village, celebrated for having afi'orded refuge to Sir 
William de Tracy, one of those who executed their 
Monarch's vengeance on the haughty prelate Becket. 
The remains of the knight lie interred in the village 

310 DE Tracy's tomb. 

churcli, which is said to have been founded by him ; 
and on his tomb the curious stranger still beholds his 
effigy clothed in priestly vestments, and reads in old 
Norman characters, — 


Here terminated my day's excursion, or at least the 
exploring part of it ; for a return through torrents of 
rain yet remained. Before I set out homeward, how- 
ever, I could not but admire the awful grandeur at- 
tendant upon the approach of a heavy thunder-storm, 
as I witnessed it from the gate in front of the little 
village inn. From this spot the eye ranges over a 
coast-line of nearly thirty miles. Hartland Point ex- 
tends, like a long wall, upon the horizon, over which 
the storm is darkly brooding. The wind is driving it 
rapidly along toAvards me; the wall-like promontory 
is soon shrouded beneath the lowering cloud. Now 
it comes pouring over Baggy Point in perpendicular, 
black, misty lines. Woollacombe Sands, a beach of 
three miles in length, are below; the tide is far out, 
and the surf is breaking upon the sands in a long 
curving band of white foam ; while the expanse of sea 
outside is as black as ink, beneath the rain-cloud. 
During the whole approach of the storm I was amused 
by observing two red- backed hawks, hovering over the 
edge of the cliff almost close to me ; they continued 
to occupy the same spot in the air, without shifting 
in the least, for many seconds ; now and then the 
wings were flapped vigorously, but still without any 
change of position. By their colour, I had no doubt 


they were Kestrels ; and this curious liabit of remain- 
ing suspended on the wing in the face of the wind, has 
acquired for them the provincial names of Standgale 
and Windhover. The pelting storm drove me into 
the house ; but when it had abated, after some half- 
hour's duration, I again looked out, and there were 
the hawks hovering yet, just where I had left them. 


Aug. \^th. — I found a Spider-crab in a hole, whither 
he had retired for the purpose of sloughing. The 
carapace and limbs were thickly studded with Anten- 
nularia antennina, and Pliunidaria cristata, many 
stems of each Avell set with ovigerous vesicles. One 
of the stems of the latter bore, parasitically springing 
from it, many stems of a more delicate congener, 
Plum, setacea, and some of these were also furnish- 
ed with vesicles, which I presently submitted to 

I selected a specimen with many vesicles, some 
empty, some broken off in the middle, others contain- 
ing more or fewer gemmules, or "planules;" and one 
in the midst of the last-named, uniformly filled with 
the common granular matter of the medullary core, 
not yet condensed into ova. About live or six seemed 
to be the complete number of gemmules in one vesicle, 
of which those nearest the narrow neck were alive and 
active, while the most remote was a small motionless 

My attention was presently attracted to a gemmule 
free in the water, which I knew to have just escaped. 


though without my seeing it : and I sat down to 
watch a vesicle. Presently one of the contained 
worm-like gemmules began to elongate its body, and 
to move slowly along the narrow neck of the bottle- 
like vesicle, toward the mouth, with a steady progres- 
sion, which the power I was using (-220 diam.) enabled 
me to see was ciliary. It soon began to emerge, the 
soft shapeless body taking a globose form as it pro- 
truded, and swelling upon the mouth of its prison, like 
a large globular head of a decanter. (See Plate XX, 
Fig. 6). As soon as it was well out, however, it took 
a definite form, that of a sub-conical oval, of which 
the larger end progressed foremost. Its length was 
about -^ th of an inch, and its breadth about half as 
much ; but as it moved, it became rather shorter. In 
appearance it exactly resembled an Infusory animal- 
cule, being of an uniform granular texture, and co- 
vered with minute vibrating cilia in every part of its 
surface. (Pig- 7). 

At first it revolved on its long axis, but presently 
this action gradually ceased, and it proceeded steadily 
in the same direction as it at first set out, until it had 
reached about twenty times its own length, when it 
came to a rest, about half an hour after its emergence ; 
the vibration of the cilia still continuing. 

In an hour and a quarter the ciliary action was but 
just discernible ; it had not moved from its place of 
rest, though its whole mass slightly quivered and vi- 
brated. The outline was now become ragged, and set 
with minute clear globules projected and isolated, as 
if the connecting gelatinous substance which bound 
them together was dissolving. I was now called away, 

THE lobster's-horn. 313 

and when I returned in two or three hours, the ani- 
malcule was a mere loose mass of granules, as were 
those which were as yet confined in the parent vesicle- 
I presume therefore that the quantity of water which 
I had allowed to the specimen (a large drop in the 
live-box of the microscope), was not sufficient to sup- 
port life longer than an hour or so, and that this little 
embryo was thus prevented from contributing any fur- 
ther to my knowledge of its development. 

THE lobster's-horn CORALLINE. 

Aug. lith. — There was a sort of appropriateness in 
the circumstances under which I became acquainted 
with the Lobster's-horn Coi'alline : it was thickly 
studding the shell and limbs of a Crab, which was 
thus formidably bristling with hairy horns. I am not 
quite sure, however, whether the Zoophytes were 
growing there, though many of them were furnished 
with their slender waving root-fibres, and stood erect. 
As stones in sand, and the sand itself are mentioned 
as the localities affected by the species, it is probable 
that the Spider- Crab, having casually been roving over 
aforestof the stems, had got many of them entangled 
among the close-set stiff hairs that everywhere cover 
his shell, and had carried them away when he depart- 
ed. I think this the rather because many of the 
specimens were fragments of stalks, evidently so 

The Anten7iularia has an aspect very diverse from 
the Sertulai'ice, Tliimularim^ and Campanularice, with 
which it is allied, in its more robust form, its deep - 

E 2 






dently perforate, through which the common core 
communicates with the yellv until its 'development into 
a planule. None that I saw contained more than a 
single ovum, which is large, regularly oval, and of a 
rich huff-yellow hue, conspicuous to the naked eye, 
especially when there are many crowded on the stalk. 
This ovum gradually developes itself, within the vesicle, 
into a pear-shaped planule, covered with minute cilia 
in every part, the vihratile action of which can be de- 
tected by the microscope before its extrusion. As its 
escape draws near, it slowly moves about in its prison, 
lengthening and shortening its body, and slightly 
altering its outline in different parts. 

I observed a planule (and afterwards another) in 
the act of escaping from the vesicle ; the animal was 
sluggish and the process tedious, as compared with 
the emergence of the planule of Plum, setacea. This 
may perhaps be accounted for by the extreme minute- 
ness of the ciha in the Antennularia, they being very 
much smaller than in Plumularia, though the pla- 
nule itself is three or four times as large. The body 
was constricted by the margin of the vesicle as it 
slowly emerged ; but it was not until the posterior ex- 
tremity was quite freed that I perceived the presence 
of an unsuspected impediment. The vesicle is fur- 
nished with a lid, fastened like the cover of a box, at 
that side which looks towards the stalk of the poly- 
pidom, by a sort of hinge ; it was forced open by the 
emerging planule, and fell down nearly close (see 
Fig. 6), as it finally quitted, by the elasticity of the 

The freed planule is about -g^-th inch in length, but 


grows much larger in the course of the first day, attain- 
ing to about ^^th rnch. It is of a lengthened pear-shape, 
the larger end being the anterior. It moves evenly 
and rather rapidly, by means of its cilia, which cover 
the whole surface, but which are very minute. Its 
appearance and motion greatly resemble those of a 
Stefitor, when gliding moderately along through the 
water. (Fig. 3.) 

One which I selected for examination glided freely 
about on the surface of its glass prison for about a 
day and a half; at the end of that time it took up its 
position in one of the angles, and the next morning I 
found that it had not moved again. But it had 
undergone changes which I rightly siipposed to be 
the first steps in the development of the polype. (See 
fig. 4). The large end of the pyriform rests in the 
angle ; the small end is become bulbous and is sepa- 
rated from the body by a coustriction, and there is 
another slighter constriction in the middle of the 
body. The orange-colour is retiring from the cir- 
cumference, especially from what appears to be the 
budding bulb, the whole of which is pellucid white, a 
little more translucent down its middle. 

Twelve hours afterwards, this buddiug extremity I 
found produced into an indubitable tube of consi- 
derable length (Fig. 5.), with glassy walls, one joint 
already formed near the extremity, and the termina- 
tion rounded. The contents were white and granular, 
separated from the walls in the basal parts, but filhng 
the whole interior near the tip. There was a clear 
opening through the substance of the granular me- 
dulla in one place, dividing off a portion of it into a 


slender branch, which presently united again with the 
main core. The total length was now -^ inch, of 
which the tube was -j^ inch, the diameter of the latter, 
just below the joint, being about ^^ inch. I could 
not discover, with the closest watching, any circu- 
lation or other motion among the granules of the 
medulla. No indication of sensitiveness was given, 
though an Euplotes with its bristly feet w^as running 
rapidly to and fro about the tube, and occasionally 
crossing the tip. 

The next morning, Aug. 20th, I coukl perceive no 
increase over the condition of twelve hours before ; 
but slight changes in the form of the medulla w^ere 
taking place, that shewed life was active. Throughout 
this day I perceived the extremity slowly lengthening, 
not quite uniformly, but pushing out a portion in a 
little tumour, the depressions around which would be 
presently filled up, and the surface would become 
smooth and round again ; then in a little while, 
another swelling would appear, which would again 
be obliterated, and thus the increase went on. The 
clear opening in the granular core also lengthened, 
and another formed above it, the two at length 
merging mto one, thus dividing the medulla into two 
lateral columns ; sometimes a very delicate film was 
partially sketched across the interspace, which was 
gradually reduced to a thread as of viscid substance, 
and then obliterated. 

On the morning of the 21st, the budding portion 
exterior to the joint was equal in length to that 
portion below it. (See fig. 7). The young portion 
appears to be very soft and flexible, for on my incau- 


tioiisly pouring off the water to change it, the whole 
part outside the joint being deprived of the support 
of the dense fluid, fell down by its own weight to a 
right angle with the other part, and so remained bent, 
ever after the w^ater was repoured in, until I carefully 
lifted it with the point of a pin to its original position 
which it was then able to retain. This morning I 
first perceived the creeping root, in the form of two 
slender cylindrical shoots springing from one side of 
the basal bulb. 

About the middle of this day the separation of the 
medulla extended to within a short distance of the 
tip ; this pait was quite filled with it in a very dense 
condition, and from it the medulla descended in two 
columns, separated from the walls of the tube, for 
some distance downward. 

2Qrd. — The tube increases in length, but not in 
diameter, (See fig. 8). the division of the medulla 
into two slender lateral columns is complete, except 
in the budding tip. The two rootlets have grown a 
little, and one of them has sent forth an irregular 
lateral plate of colourless shelly substance. 

Increase proceeded no further than this point; 
though it was manifestly alive for a day or two longer, 
during which the condensation of the granular pulp 
still went on ; — but on the 96th the multitude of 
active Infusoria swarming around the tube warned me 
(though none of them seemed to have as yet attacked 
it, and though no change in its appearance could yet 
be detected) that death had ensued. It is remarkable 
how immediately these minute creatures appear to 
have notice of the decay of any animal matter in 


water, both fresh and salt, and how rapid is their 
multiplication in such circumstances. Some of these 
were of the genus Euplotes, a large and a small 
species ; but the swaiming multitudes were of sim- 
pler structure, more like the family Monadi7ia of 

The next day I found the indication but too true ; 
decomposition was going on in the granular pulp, 
which was becoming undefined in outline ; and had 
retired from the shelly tip of the tube. 

The minute details of such observations as these, 
especially when prematurely terminated, some of my 
readers may possibly think needless, and therefore 
worthless: but the phenomena connected with the 
reproduction of the Zoophytes, are among the most 
important of those which are now receiving the atten- 
tion of naturahsts. And it is only by carefully 
watching and accurately recording such phenomena, 
in every species, as they may occur, that we may 
hope to establish a sure basis for philosophic genera- 
lization. Isolated facts are better than none. 


Capstone Spout-Holes — Purple Hue of low Rocks — Tadpole of a 
MoUusk — Its Habits — Visit to Barricane — A Beach of Shells — 
Rock-pools — Their Contents — Antiopa — Its Spawn — Hatch- 
ing of the Embryos — Immense Number in one Brood — The 
Torrs — Bloody Field — Flowers — View from the Cliff— Torr 
Point — Rocky Staircase — White Pebble Bay — Tide-pools — 
Maidenhair Fern — The Precipice — A curious Medusoid — • 
Medusa Fishing — Mode of Operation — Difficulties — Thau- 
mantias pilosella — Its Luminosity — Description of its Struc- 
ture — The Umbrella — The Sub-umbrella — The Peduncle — 
The Radiating Vessels — The Ovaries — The Tentacles — Pig- 
ment-cells — Eyes. 


At the most precipitous part of the promenade 
round the Capstone, the N. W. corner, the rock 
is broken into angular buttresses and projections 
of more than usual massiveness. You look down 
over the low parapet upon an area of flattish rock of 
considerable size, raised but a little above low-water 
mark. By taking a round, you may scramble down 
over the ledges to this part, and admire the wild 
grandeur of the scene. On two sides is the sea, and 
on the other two sides the precipice forming an angle. 
That on the south side rises perpendicularly like a 


wall ; and its base is separated from the area where 
you stand, by a long but narrow fissure, through 
which the sea rushes and recedes with every wave. 
In the shadow of this great wall of rock there are 
several round deep basins, always full of water, 
fringed with the finer sorts of sea-weeds, and empur- 
pled all round their interior with the encrusting coral- 
lines. If you go down at extreme ebb, in a low 
spring-tide, you will see the whole of the surface of 
rock, that is covered in ordinary tides, but now 
exposed, tinged with the same reddish purple hue, 
very pleasing to the eye; a colour derived in part 
from the number of red and purple sea-weeds that 
flourish at this level, but principally from the com- 
mon coralline, not only in its free tufted state, 
but also, and chiefly, m its form of a shelly crust, 
that spreads like a lichen upon the surface of the 

At the extremity of the rocky wall, there are two 
small holes in a ledge, which communicate with the 
sea by funnel-shaped orifices. Through these the 
sea spouts in an interesting manner. The wave 
rushes in under the ledge with its hollow roar, and 
dashes up forcibly beneath it. At the same instant 
there issues from the first hole, which is only a nar- 
row slit, a powerful jet of steam-like vapour, resem- 
bling the rush from the waste-pipe of an engine. 
This is the pioneer : the next instant a cloud of water 
and foam shoots upward and outward from the 
second hole with terrific force, and is thrown to a 
distance of twenty or thirty feet. The regularity of 
the succession, the suddenness of the outburst of 


white foam from the dark purple rock, and the rush- 
ing sound of the explosion, all add to the effect. 

The ragged rock-pools that lie in the deep shadow 
of the precipice on this area are tenanted with many 
fine kinds of algae, zoophytes, Crustacea and medusm. 
In one of these I took with a ring-net about the end 
of August, when fishing for medusae, what seems from 
its resemblance to published figures to be the tadpole 
of Amaroucium proliferum, one of the aggregated 
Tunicaia. Its resemblance to the tadpole of a frog 
is curiously close, though its total length, including 
the tail, is not more than -j^^th of an inch. It consists 
of an oblong o\^al body of a pellucid yellow tinge, 
with a central nucleus of rich vermillion, deepest in 
the centre, which sends off some indistinct branching 
vessels towards the front part, and is continued pos- 
teriorly all through the tail, nearly to its extremity. 

The activity of this tiny creature is remarkable ; 
its motions are like those of a fish, executed by the 
vibration of the long flat tail from side to side. By 
this means it scuttles along through the water with 
great rapidity, in a tremulous manner. Its beautiful 
colour makes it conspicuous in a glass of clear water,* 
notwithstanding its minuteness ; it looks like a bril- 
liant little ruby. Yet it is as evanescent as beautiful ; 
a very brief confinement puts a period to its existence. 


A few weeks after my former disappointment, I 
again set out for Barricane. It is one of the places 
in this neighbourhood invariably mentioned as nota- 


hilia, wliicli every visitor to the town must see 
without fail. Its peculiarity is, that it has a beach 
entirely composed of shells, some of which are rare, 
or at least are not found anywhere else in this vicinity. 
The scenery around is also varied and beautiful, and 
would of itself present sufiicient attractions to reward 
a visit. It lies about half a mile below Morte, at the 
foot of the cliffs of the promoDtory, and at one end 
of that long incurved shore, known as WooUacombe 

From the grassy slope at the top of the cliffs a 
narrow footpath leads steeply down to an area of what 
seems to be small pebbles ; but which, on examina- 
tion, prove to be shells, of many kinds. Most of 
these, ha^ing been washed up by the tides, are broken 
into fragments ; but a good number are found in toler- 
able integrity. Groups of women and girls from the 
neighbouring hamlets may always be seen, during the 
summer months, raking with their fingers among the 
fragments, for unbroken specimens ; collections of 
which thev offer for sale to visitors. 

Among the shells of which the beach is composed, 
there were some which were interesting to me. Be- 
sides two or three little kinds of whelk, and the 
common murex and purpura, which are everywhere 
abundant, and the beautiful little cowry, which can- 
not be considered rare, there is the elegant wentle-trap 
fScalaria communis), the elephant's tusk or horn- 
shell (Dentalium entalisj, the cylindrical dipper 
C Bulla cylindraceaj, called by the local collectors 
" maggot," and the beaded Nerite fNatica monili- 
feraj, a large and beautiful shell, to which the 


women have given the euphonious appellation of 


I wished to procure some of these species in a liv- 
ing state, and hoped that I might he able to find them 
about the rocks at extreme low water, as it was now 
spring-tide. Therefore, leaving the shell-collectors, 
I strolled down the long narrow inlet, of which the 
shell-beach was the head, towards the tide-pools at 
the water's edge. It was a long way down the cove, 
which resembles a narrow lane, bounded by high walls 
of sharp and rugged rock ; and as I walked down, I 
perceived that the accumulated shells were found only 
at high water mark ; below this there was nothing but 
soft yellow sand to the edge of the sea. 

The black and rough bounding rocks, however, in- 
closed in their hollows many pools, some of which 
were of large dimensions. Those near the water's 
edge were generally deep, narrow, wall-sided, and 
dark ; all of which qualities made them excellent ex- 
ploring ground for a naturalist. Their steepness and 
depth rendering them difficult of examination from 
without, I stripped and jumped in, the weather being 
warm, and worked away with my hammer and chisel, 
as long as I dared in water breast-high. 

I could find not a single individual of any of the 
rarer species of shells alive; but other objects oc- 
curred, which were not devoid of scientific interest. 
Among other sea-weeds there were two growing in this 
deep pool, far under water, which I had not before 
met with. One was Cladostej)hus verticillatus, con- 
sisting of stalks much branched, no thicker than 
threads, but set round at short intervals with close 


wliorls of minute, olive-coloured hairs. The other 
was a rare species, though sufficiently abundant here; 
Taonia atomaria, resembling a thin yellowish leaf, 
split into several divisions, and cut to somewhat of 
the shape of a fan. The whole leaf is crossed by 
many dark brown lines, which on being magnified are 
seen to be composed of dots, clustered together in 
this manner. These are the spores^ or seeds of the 

Among the animals was a creature of exquisite 
beauty, which I now saw for the first time. It was 
the Crested Antiopa, one of the naked-gilled Mollusca, 
closelv allied to the Eolides, some of which formed the 
subjects of observation in an earlier part of this volume. 
The breathing organs are very numerous; they con- 
sist of oval bags, delicately pellucid, arranged all 
round the sides and front of the animal, and have an 
"extremely elegant appearance. Each one has a brown 
line running through its transparent substance, and is 
tipped with silver-white. The general colour of the 
animal is pellucid-grey, with spots and lines of opaque 
white, that have the lustre of silver. It is about an 
inch in length. 

This beautiful little animal I brought carefully 
home, and placed in one of my large glass vases of sea 
water, kept in a fit state for the support of animal life 
by growing sea-weeds. It immediately became at 
home in its new residence, and remained in good 
health for a considerable period. In about a week it 
laid on the side of the glass, just beneath the surface 
of the water, a beautiful coil of spawn, which looked 
like a necklace of white beads arranged in successive 

F 2 


furbelows or figiires-of-8, in a spiral form, making just 
a coil and a half. A closer inspection showed that 
these folds were inclosed in a band of clear transparent 
jelly. A most beautiful object it was, even when 
cursorily looked at ; but when examined with a lens, 
each of the beads, which at first I had supposed to be 
the ova, was really a nidus of many : a perfect sphere 
of clear jelly containing about sixty embryos, arrang- 
ed in crescent form in the globule, filling more than 
half of its volume. 

Five days after the deposition I saw that the 
embryos were in rapid motion within their spherules • 
I therefore detached two from the gelatinous band, 
and placed them in a cell beneath the microscope. 
The little nautilus-like embryos were now seen, each 
in his tiny shell of one spire, vibrating his cilia with 
energy, and all swimming rapidly among each other 
within their sphere, seeking an outlet. The soft walls 
yielded and protruded here and there, as one and 
another pressed forcibly against them, and at length 
burst, and the embryos came out in turn, as they 
discovered the breach. 

Taking sixty to be the average number of embrj'os 
in each spherule, I endeavoured to estimate the total 
number in this coil of spawn. I found about 26 
spherules in each figure-8, which gives 760 embryos; 
then there were about 30 such convolutions in the 
whole coil, which gives the total 45,000 embryos. 
Yet this coil was not all the spawn perfected by this 
animal in the season, for a large contorted roll is yet 
visible in the ovary through the pellucid body of the 
Autiopa; and these creatures are well known to 


lay their spawn at short intervals all through the 


The hack-windows of the house where I reside look 
out upon a sort of amphitheatre, the boundaries of 
which are lofty hills, with slopes green to the summit. 
Those to the right terminate in several pointed peaks, 
the principal of which are known as the seven Torrs. 
Though their inland side presents a gradual grassy 
slope, seaward they form precipices of tremendous 
abruptness, descending perpendicularly more than 
four hundred feet to the water's edge. 

The ascent of these peaks, and the walk round 
their summits by a narrow path which has been cut 
for the purpose, is a most agreeable promenade ; but 
as the Torrs are private property, a small toll is ex- 
acted for the admission of visitors. We approach it 
by the pleasant path which winds beside the Wilder, 
now called Church-path, but formerly bearing the re- 
pulsive appellation of Bloody-field, from a fatal duel 
which legendary tradition reports to have been once 
fought there. 

A light ornamental iron gate admits us within the 
precincts. We cross the little stream, and pursue our 
way along its side, beneath the willows and alders that 
hang over it, and almost hide it. It is near the end 
of August, and the banks are fringed with a rank, 
coarse herbage, adorned with many autumnal flowers. 
The great willow-herb and the purple loose-strife are 
conspicuous from their fine crimson blossom ; the 
hemp agrimony, the teasel, and the knapweed, are 


here in coarse profusion, with the ragwort, and other 
yellow composite. The thorn bushes are blushing 
with their ripening scarlet haws, among which the 
foliage of a white convolvulus has gracefully entwined 
itself, now starred with its noble snowy flowers. 
Kobin-redbreast is pouring forth his simple song by 
broken stanzas in an elm over-head ; and a rabbit 
pops out from a bush, and runs into a sort of quarry 
on our left hand ; a corner half-inclosed by walls of 
perpendicular rock, some twenty feet high, ivy-clad, 
and crowned with furze. 

A winding path, with a hedge at one side, leads 
steeply upward ; and presently we stand at the edge of 
the cliff, with a beach of rocks and boulders below. 
A fog from the sea is driving up before the wind, and 
rises in flocky masses and shreds of mist, veiling the 
lofty precipices in dim undefined grandeur. The mist 
lifts a little, and we recognise, away to the right, the 
Ladies' Bathing Pool, with its wide area of quiet 
water. The path winds along the verge of the cliff, 
fringed with bramble, heath, and fern, among which 
the modest little milkwort charms by its elegant beauty, 
and the meadow-sweet by its delicious fragrance. 

A narrow green promontory runs from this part into 
the sea, sloping rapidly to the extremity : it is about 
a hundred yards in length, and less than half as wide. 
At first you would suppose its close verdant turf to be 
grass, but when you examine it carefully you see that 
it is almost exclusively composed of the common thrift, 
which forms a bed, softer, more spongy, and more 
elastic than any grass turf. This projection is called 
Torr Point. 


Such green sloping promontories, with precipitious 
sides, seem characteristic of this part of the coast- 
There are several which I know of, succeeding each 
other at short intervals, just here : one of them hears 
the name of Greenaway's Foot. They are all exactly 
alike in structure and appearance ; so much so, that 
it is almost impossible to distinguish them, except 
by their mutual position, or by their relation to the 
hills above. 

I walked down to the end, thinking that as the 
slope had been so steep, I might find it easy to gain 
the beach from the extremity. But no ; the precipice 
was as abrupt and perpendicular here as anywhere, 
and the sea still far below : where a huge angular 
rock of picturesque form raised its brown head out of 
the clear greenish-blue depths. 

From near the middle of the western side, however, 
a zigzag staircase of steps, rudely cut in the living 
rock, leads down the face of the lofty cliff, to a 
narrow cove of blue sand, quite inclosed by rocks ; 
which, at least at the back and sides, are almost per- 
peudicular, and two hundred and fifty feet in height. 
By clambering over the piled masses that project into 
the sea, I found myself in White Pebble Bay, an in- 
dentation of more ample dimensions, strewn with large 
rounded pebbles of white quartz, thick veins of which 
are seen pervading the ridges of blue slate that run 
along the beach. The slate, being softer than the 
quartz, is more rapidly worn away by the action of 
the waves and the weather ; and the latter is left pro- 
jecting, until a heavier sea than ordinary breaks off frag- 
ments, which by rolling soon acquire a rounded form. 


Capacious tide-pools occur among the rocks far 
down the beach, presenting at low-water excellent 
bathing pools, some of them large and deep enough 
to swim in, and sheltered from the wind by surround- 
ing walls of solid rock. I enjoyed the amenities of a 
bathe in one of these, in whose pure waters Laminaria 
saccharina and digitata, and Halidrys siliquosa^ 
were waving, and the delicate crimson tufts of Rhody- 
menia jiihata were fringing the sides, while colonies 
of Aniliea cereiis were stretching abroad their green 
and snaky tentacles. 

This little bay is one of the few recognised locali- 
ties for the true maiden-hair fern ; and it so happened 
that while I was looking about to discover a specimen 
on the cliffs, I met with a gentleman who was here 
with the same object. He, however, was better in- 
structed where to procure it, and how ; for he had 
brought servants with him, and had taken the trouble 
to provide himself with a ladder, which he had reared 
against the side of a glen or chine at the back of the 
bay. Here, some fifteen or twenty feet up, among 
the debris fallen from above, grows the maiden-hair 
in little tufts, to obtain which without injury it is 
necessary to detach fragments of the rock with a 

Returning to the top of the green slope, I pursue 
another path along the margin of the cliffs, over the 
head of White Pebble Bay. The scenery, as I sit on 
the turf at the edge, is most magnificent. There is a 
dark gulley on the left, cleaving the rocks down to 
the cove, and then, above this, immediately in front 
of me, is a broad and rugged precipice of dark grey 


slate, nearly four hundred feet in height, in one un- 
broken mass. Grass and ivy grow on the narrow 
ledges and slopes, and the towering summit is crowned 
by a conical peak of verdant turf, the loftiest of the 

Up to this giddy height the path still winds by a 
zigzag course ; every step bringing the traveller into 
a purer atmosphere, and giving him a wider and more 
exhilarating prospect ; just as a child of God, the 
more his walk approaches heavenward, obtains fuller 
and sweeter communion with his Father, and enjoys 
clearer and more expanded views of his purposes, both 
of providence and grace. 


At/g. 2Qt/i. In a large glass jar containing sea- 
weeds and many kinds of zoophytes, &c., alive, I 
found swimming in the water among the medusoids 
of Campanidaria voluhilis^ and Laomedea geniculata, 
a single medusoid, in general resembling the former, 
but a little smaller, and differing in the following par- 
ticulars. (See Plate XXII.) 

The tentacles were eight pairs, each pair set in con- 
tact with each other: at first they seemed only twin 
bulbs, but after a time they lengthened into short 
cylindrical wrinkled flexible arms, each terminated by 
a globular head, of nearly twice the diameter of the 
arm. The globose head contained an irregular num- 
ber of clear oval grains, each of which had an oval 
mark within it ; the form and structure closely resem- 
bhng those of the tentacles of Coryne. 


Between each pair of tentacles and the next pair 
was set a single visual or auditory capsule, compara- 
tively large, sessile on the outer border of the circular 
canal: its substance was transparent and colourless, 
and the higly refractile spherule within was connected 
with an oval cell or vesicle, forming apparently the 
end of it. 

The sub-umbrella was campanulate, dense in struc- 
ture, with longitudinal fibres or rugae. The umbrella 
contained many oval clear granules scattered in its 
substance, proportionally larger than those of the 
medusoid of Camp, volubilis. 

After some time I perceived that it was reversed ; 
the pedicelled stomach being on the outside, and the 
visual capsules being within the margin. Figs, I 
and 2 represent the Medusoid: 3, a pair of tentacles: 
4, an organ of vision. , 


A sail for a mile or two along the coast opened up 
to me a new field of interesting research, and made 
me acquainted with a tribe of beautiful creatures that 
I had hitherto known only by report. I had provided 
myself with a ring-net of fine muslin, a foot wide and 
two feet deep, affixed to a staff six feet in length, for 
capturing my prey; and a basket containing two or 
three glass jars of different sizes, for preserving the 
specimens and bringing them home. At first I sat in 
the stem-sheets and held the net at the surface per- 
pendicularly, with the staff against a thole-pin, as if 
it had been an oar ; drawing it in for examination after 


f? N- 


( J 










TEBcsnt 3fJ fthlh 

? r ui/,-</ A v Hij.Umaji^l t, tfaJjtory, 



every two or three minutes. But I found that though 
I took many specimens thus, they were of little value ; 
for the way of the hoat, though there was only a light 
breeze, pressed them so strongly against the muslin 
of the net, that they were generally dead and shape- 
less when transferred to the jars. 

Finding that little effective was to he done thus, I 
determined to try the rocks. We steered for Samson's 
Cave, a huge cavern, the entrance to which is guarded 
by two large masses of projecting rock. The tide was 
high, however, and the sea was breaking into the 
cave's mouth, and dashing against the perpendicular 
cliffs, forbidding a landing here. But within the inner 
point there was a little sheltered beach, where the 
rocks shoaled so as to allow landing to an agile foot, 
and to afford standing place for the use of the net. 
Here then I took my station, and soon perceived 
several of the little beauties floating in the clear and 
comparatively calm sea within reach ; and these I 
dipped out readily. 

I adopted the plan recommended by Prof. Forbes 
for transferring the captives to the jar, viz., turning 
the bag of the net inside out into the water within 
the jar, and letting the animals float off. But it 
seemed to me that this mode injured many ; perhaps 
because the mouths of the jars were somewhat too 
narrow to admit the net without its falling into folds. 
If a Medusa of considerable size happened to be be- 
tween the folds, it would probably become spoiled by 
the pressure, before it could be freed under the water. 
Some of the smaller ones, moreover, say about the 
size of a pea or a small button, would occasionally 


adhere to the muslin so firmly as not to float off when 
immersed. I found it best, therefore, to look into the 
net as soon as I had dipped, and notice all the knobs 
of jelly that were visible, taking them one by one, 
then putting my finger beneath each on the opposite 
side of the muslin, push it under water, giving it a 
slight jerk if it did not detach itself at once. Then, 
when all that were perceptible were thus freed, I re- 
versed the net in the jar for the minute and incon- 
spicuous ones. Thus I obtained in a little while a 
great multitude of specimens, many more than T could 
identify when I arrived at home. I made out, how- 
ever, about ten species, and I am sure there were 
many more ; but by the time I had taken sketches of 
such as w^ere not mentioned by Prof. Forbes, and had 
identified some of those that were, the rest were lying 
a dead confused heap at the bottom of the jars. 

By far the most common species hereabouts is 
Thaumantias pilosella. It occurred by scores about 
the rocky points ; it was sure to be in the net when I 
looked at it in the boat, and it occurs in tide-pools 
and recesses below the Capstone, and in the bathing- 
ponds at the Tunnel. It is about three-fourths of an 
inch in diameter, like a watch-glass in form, but 
rather deeper, crossed at right angles by four narrow 
lines of a faint purple tint, and margined by a great 
number of short slender threads, each of which has 
at its base a bulb, with a dark purple speck in it. 
This circle of dark dots is visible even to the naked eye, 
and they are conspicuous when a pocket lens is brought 
to bear on them. But there is a way in which they 
may be made most beautifully and brilliantly con- 


spicuous. I went into my study after dark without a 
candle, to try whether any of the captives in the 
different vases were luminous, I took a slender stick 
and felt ah out in the water at random ; presently I 
touched something soft, and instantly a circle of 
bright little lamps was lighted up, like a coronet of 
sparkling diamonds, or like a circular figure of gas 
jets, lighted at a public illumination, and seen from a 
distance ; more especially as some of the constituent 
sparks appeared to go out, and revive again, just as 
do the gas-flames if the night be windy. The phos- 
phorescence, though but momeutary, was renewed as 
often as I touched' the animal, which was not very 
often, as I feared to injure it. 

As this was the commonest species of Medusa here, 
as its structure is simple and may be taken as normal 
in the tribe, and as it belongs to a genus that in- 
cludes by far the largest number of British species, I 
will describe it in detail as a sample of the rest. 
_ It consists of an umbrella- shaped bell of clear 
colourless jelly, like a watch-glass, if you imagine it a 
great deal thicker in the centre than at the margins ; 
but sometimes becoming hemispherical in outline. 
The inner surface of the bell is lined with a skin 
equally gelatinous transparent and colourless with the 
former, but often minutely wrinkled, and generally 
easy to be distinguished by its appearance : this is 
called the sub-umbrella. From its centre depends a 
very moveable, flexible peduncle, composed of more 
substantial flesh than the bell, and evidently cellular 
and fibrous. In this genus it is small, but in some 
it protrudes beyond the margin of the bell ; it gene- 


rally terminates, as in the present case, in four ex- 
panded fleshy lips, extremely flexible and versatile, 
and capable of seizing prey, which is transferred to a 
stomach situated in the interior of the peduncle. 

From the base of this hanging stomach, four slender 
vessels diverge at so many right angles, and passing 
across the surface of the sub-umbrella, proceed to its 
margin, where they communicate with another vessel, 
that runs completely round the edge. The circulation 
of a nutrient fluid can be very distinctly traced in all 
these canals. 

The four radiating vessels are bordered in the out- 
ward half of their course by the oVaries, which in this 
species are narrow and linear, but are more or less 
conspicuous according to their degree of development. 
In a specimen now before me, these ovaries are full 
of clear globose ova with central nuclei ; they are of 
various sizes, some being so large as to bulge out the 
side of the ovary. 

The sides of the marginal canal are thick and 
granular, and give rise to a number of bulbous pro- 
cesses, composed apparently of the same substance, 
and running off* into slender thread-like tentacles very 
flexible, extensile, and contractile. The bulbous bases 
frequently contain highly- coloured masses of matter, 
which are considered by Prof. Forbes and others as 
radimentary eyes. In the species before us, these 
spots are crescent- shaped, and of a deep purple hue, 
forming a conspicuous circle of specks around the 
margin, even to the naked eye. In general the ten- 
tacles, whether many or few, are all of the same kind; 
but in this species there are several (from four to 


seven) minuter tentacles without bulbs, between every 
two of the larger sort. The latter vary much in 
number and size, and are not at all symmetrical, either 
in position or arrangement, some being twice as close 
together as others. In the specimen before me, the 
quadrants of the margin formed by the radiating 
canals present respectively the following numbers of 
primary tentacles : — 16, 10, 9, 14; =49. Some, too, 
of these are small and apparently developing. 

Besides these organs, the margin is furnished with 
others, which, by those who consider the pigment 
masses to be eyes, are believed to be organs of hear- 
ing, but which seem to me rather to be the true media 
of vision. They consist of cells, usually more or less 
globose, containing one or more spherical bodies of 
high refracting power. Prof. Forbes has not noticed 
them in his description of this species; they are, how- 
ever, large and peculiar ; — first in shape, being semi- 
elliptical swellings of the substance of the marginal 
canal, and secondly in the number of their spherules, 
wliich varies from about 35 to 50 in each capsule. 
The spherules are arranged in a double crescentic 
row, those which form the middle being generally 
larger than those at the extremities. The capsules 
are eight in number, two in each quadrant, nearly 
equally distributed ; but not holding any fixed rela- 
tion of position to the tentacles. 

G 2 


Rapparee Cove — Strange Gravel — Its singular Origin— The 
Glassy ^quorea — Its Form and Structure — The Forbesian 
^quorea — The Bathing-Pool — Medusae therein — Description 
of a new Species — Its Habits — Luminousness — Distinctive 
Characters — The Ruby Medusa— Its first Occurrence — Wig- 
mouth — Production of the Gemmules — Their Appearance — 
Motion of the Turris — Metamorphosis of the Gemmules — 
Their Polype-form — Goodness of God in the Beautiful — A 
Christian's Interest in Nature — The Redeemed Inheritance — 
The Crystalline Jolinstonella — Its Beauty — Its Doubtful Affi- 
'nities — The Starry Willsia — Parasitic Leech — Tmread Cap- 
sules — Nature of these Organs. 

As the visitor pursues the pleasant walk leading 
through what are called the Quay Fields, he cannot 
help seeing, here and there, a rather obtrusive direc- 
tion-board with a finger pointing towards a certain 
point of the shore, accompanied by the announcement 
tbat such is the way to Rapparee Cove, whose claims 
to notice as a bathing place, on account of its 
privacy and comfort, are somewhat boastfully set 

I visited it, and found it indeed, like so much of 
the scenery hereabout, sufficiently wild, romantic, and 
picturesque. It is situated immediately opposite the 
entrance to the harbour, under the shadow of the 


gigantic Hillsborough. The Cove itself is a spacious 
area, almost locked iu, being protected seaward by 
rocks, and environed on three sides by cliffs, more 
than usually lofty, and much too steep to be climbed. 
In fact there is no access to it, when the tide is in, 
but by a narrow foot-path, that has been cut in one 
part of the rock, the entrance to which is guarded by 
a gate. Precipitious as are these cliffs, however, they 
are green with ivy, that trails and hangs in graceful 
freedom over their surface, and with fern which grows 
upon them in great luxuriance. Tufts of samphire 
spring from the rugged ledges; and at the foot of the 
cliffs, which jut out in projecting buttresses, like the 
great spurs of the cotton-trees in tropical climates, 
the white goose-foot was growing, with its large an- 
gular leaves curiously covered with a sort of web, 
easily removeable with the fingers, and having on 
their under surfaces an appearance and texture that 
closely resembled fine flannel. There, too, was the 
corn sow-thistle, a fine plant with large yellow flowers, 
eminently characteristic of the season, for it was the 
month of September. 

The floor of the cove is principally composed of 
sand, which changes, as it approaches low-water mark, 
to small shingle.- Among the latter, the observant 
stranger notices a quantity of yellow gravel, scattered 
all along the water-line between tide-marks. This at 
once strikes him as a remarkable feature, seeing that 
nothing of the kind is found on other parts of this 
coast, nor does any analogous formation exist in the 

On inquiry, he learns that these yellow pebbles are 



strangers, and not natives of the place ; that they are, 
in fact, the enduring records of a tragical event that 
occurred some fifty years ago. 

It was in the war with France, which ushered in 
the commencement of the present century, that two 
transports returning from the West Indies, with black 
prisoners from some of the French Islands, were 
driven on shore in this cove, while attempting to 
enter the harbour of Ilfracombe in stress of weather. 
Most of the people escaped with their lives, but 
almost everything else on board was lost ; and for 
years after the sad event, the people of the town used 
to find gold coins, and jewels, among the shingle 
at low-tide. The vessels were ballasted with this 
yellow gravel, which though washed to and fro by the 
rolling surf, remains to bear witness of this shipwreck, 
and to identify the spot where it took place ; a curious 
testimony, which probably will endure long after the 
event itself is lost in oblivion, and perhaps until the 
earth and all the works therein shall be burned up. 


Among the treasures which rewarded my first at- 
tempt at Medusa fishing was a beautiful translucent 
species of a genus, which when Professor Forbes pub- 
lished his Monograph had not been recognised as 
British, but a species of which has been lately de- 
scribed by that accomplished naturalist. Though the 
genus contains many species, I cannot find any de- 
scription that agrees with the present, which I desig- 
nate as the Glassy iEquorea ( JEquorea vitrinaj. 
It may be thus described. 


Umbrella liemisplieric, or sub-conic, about 1 J inch 
wide and f inch high. (Plate XXIII. fig. 1). Sub- 
umbrella very low, depressed and funnel-shaped in 
in the centre, which is quite perforate, the sides of 
the funnel descending into a peduncle, which expands 
into many (about 20) narrow, pointed, divaricating, 
reflexed, furbelowed points, reaching to about the 
level of the margin. The peripheral half of the sub- 
umbrella is traversed by about ninety radiating lines, 
(See fig. 2) which are colourless but resemble bands 
oi frosted or ground glass upon a body of clear glass. 
They are swollen irregularly or attenuated in parts, 
and where swollen appear to be penetrated by a cen- 
tral vessel. The central portion of the sub-umbrella^ 
a perfect circle, into which these lines run, is of the 
frosted appearance, with radiating fine lines of crvs- 
talline, proceeding from the centre of each of the 
marginal lines. In the funnel of the sub-umbrella, 
lines of opaque white commence, alternating with the 
crystalline lines, and gradually emerge into the fur- 
belows of the peduncle (fig. 5). 

The vessels of the sub-umbrella appear to be in 
many cases lost just before reaching the marginal 
canal; some however can be traced into it. The mar- 
ginal canal is very slender, and gives origin to a great 
number of excessivelv attenuated white tentacles, two 
or three to each vessel, or more than 200 in all. 
Their bulbous origins are minute ; they are generally 
much wrinkled and contorted, and adhere to any 
object they touch. (See figs. 3 and 4). 

I had turned the animal back- downwards for ex- 
amination, and presently saw the funnel-like peduncle 


dilate into a wide circular orifice, of which it formed 
merely a delicately-membranous margin, the white 
lines radiating through it (as seen at fig. 7) and pro- 
longed into long narrow furbelowed filaments, remote 
from each other, and connected by a sort of a web, 
waved at its edge. Where the stomach can be T 
cannot conceive, since the peduncle is nothing but 
this membranous circle. I passed a slender stick 
through the orifice without meeting any resistance 
until it touched the clear, perfectly transparent sub- 
stance of the umbrella, at the level of the highest 
part of the sub-umbrella. 

Not a trace of colour appears in the whole animal, 
which yet is exquisitely beautiful. It was swimming 
near the surface, a mile or two ofi" shore, near Water- 
mouth, when I dipped it, on the afternoon of August 
26th. In captivity it was moderately active, swim- 
ming gracefully, but keeping the tentacles generally 
contracted and inconspicuous. It was luminous when 
irritated in the dark. 

A day or two afterwards I obtained another speci- 
men much smaller, not more than j inch in diameter, 
to which I was enabled to apply a higher power. 
The tentacles in this specimen (perhaps from its con- 
dition of adolescence) alternated with bulbs not de- 
veloped into tentacles, and each had at its base a very 
minute but perfect colourless ocellus, with from two 
to five highly refractile spherules unsymmetrically 
included within the globule. Two or three was the 
most common number; and they were not always 
of the same size, one being frequently present not half 
the size of the others. Fig. 6 shows a portion of the 

I — ' 



marginal canal, much magnified, with two tentacle- 
bulbs and two ocelli. 

The white lines that run down into the filaments 
produced from the edge of the peduncle are composed 
of oblong polyhedral cells set transversely. The web 
which borders them and fills the interspaces is com- 
posed of minute close set granules. 

The radiating bands of the sub -umbrella, that I have 
compared to ground glass, are vessels, and do run 
into the marginal canal ; the irregular dilatations are 
not ovaries, but simple enlargements of the vessels: 
a fluid circulates in tbem, carrying granules along 
rather rapidly : the current appears to pass up from 
the margin towards the centre of the sub-umbrella, 
near the walls of the canals, while a reverse current 
occupies the middle part, the granules frequently pas- 
sing from one into the other current. At the point 
where the canals enter the circular frosted disk, they 
have thickened fleshy hps, capable of closing so as to 
make tubes, or of separating to form grooves. A lon- 
gitudinal texture of fibres is plainly visible in these 


Sept. 1th. — There had been a heavy breeze all 
night and this morning from the N.E. which had 
set a good deal of sea in upon the shore. I took 
down my Medusa-net and jars to the shore at the 
Tunnel rocks, more for the sake of a walk than with 
the expectation of obtaining any thing, for the wind 
and sea were still high. But my first glance at the 
water revealed many Medusae. 

There is on the shore here a large pool, partly 


formed by nature ; but it has been built up in some 
places so as to make it a perfect reservoir. Being 
overflowed by the sea at high-water, its purity is 
renewed twice every day, and as it retains its contents 
when the tide recedes, it remains always full, a pond 
of nearly an acre in extent, and of considerable depth. 
Though far above low-water mark its depth and con- 
stant fulness make it a favourable locality for many 
sea-weeds, which under ordinary circumstances would 
thrive only at a level very much lower. The shelving 
sides, especially in the deeper parts, and where the 
artificial wall has been supplied, are densely fringed 
with Laminarice, and many fine species of the 
FloridecB in great luxuriance. • 

It was at the leeward side of this pond that I hap- 
pened first to look, and there in the nooks and comers, 
driven up by the wind, were several very flat Medusae 
of large size lying motionless upon the floating weeds, 
and many more of a smaller species crowded together 
upon the surface of the water. The latter were, as I 
guessed at the first glance, Thaumantias jnlosella, all 
dead, mostly covered with minute air-bubbles, and in 
many cases totally deprived of the sub-umbrella, with 
all the organs, leaving nothing but the gelatinous 

I walked around the pond, and found the same 
accumulation in most of the corners on the lee side. 
Thence down to the edge of the rocks, where the sea 
was dashing in with fury ; there too in the inlets and 
crevices of the rocks, were the same two sorts driven 
in, the former by dozens, the Thaumantias by 


On examination the larger flattened ones resolved 
themselves into two species. One was the colourless 
frosted Mquorea that I had obtained before, several 
specimens of which appeared in no wise to differ from 
the former. But the majority of individuals now cast 
ashore were of a much larger and finer species of the 
same genus. (See Plate XXIV). 

It differs from the former species in the following 
particulars. It is much larger, being from two to three 
inches in diameter, but lower in proportion, being 
about \\ inch in height, and resembling a cake or 
bun in shape. The umbrella is smooth, clear, and 
apparently colourless; but when viewed sidewise> 
against a dark back-ground, the rays of light that 
pass through the whole diameter of the umbrella are 
tinged of the most brilliant azure blue, which colour 
prevails for about a quarter of an inch above the sum- 
mit of the sub -umbrella, and is then gradually lost, 
doubtless by the rapid diminution of the thickness of 
substance through which the rays are transmitted. 

The sub-umbrella is very low and depressed, about 
\ inch in height : its substance is colourless, but the 
radiating vessels that traverse it, and which were 
frosted in the former species, are here of a delicate 
rosy hue, which is the colour also of the dependent 
margin of the central circle that occupies the placer of 
a peduncle. They are fewer (about 65 or 70 in all) 
and more slender, than in M. vitrina. 

The sides of this circle are cut into four triangular 
lobes of membrane (more or less developed), which 
are fringed with dehcate attenuated pink filaments, 
depending and floating freely in the water. The 


microscope shows them to be furhelowed slips of 
membrane, as in the former species, but here they are 
much finer, and instead of being equal and con- 
tinuous, are graduated and interrupted. Each trian- 
gular lobe has them longest at its middle point, 
whence they decrease in length on either hand ; and 
there is a space between every lobe and the next, 
which is quite destitute of fringe. 

The marginal vessel is very slender, and carries 
about thirty-six very fine thread-like tentacles, 
usually contracted in close spirals to J inch in length, 
but sometimes depending to the extent of several 
inches, in which case they seem as fine as a spider's 
thread. They are not symmetrically disposed, nor do 
they bear any regular relation of position to the radi 
ating vessels. Their colour is pale pink or flesh 
colour. Their texture is minutely granular, and their 
bulbs present a similar appearance to those of the for- 
mer species. As in that also, so here, there are 
numerous auditory or visual capsules, with from one 
to four spherules in each. 

This very fine Medusa commonly floats at the 
surface in captivity ; and seems to have little locomo- 
tive power, contrasting strongly wdth tlie minute 
Turres and Oceanim that shoot along with vigorous 
leaps in various depths. It maintains a pretty uniform, 
not very rapid, contraction of its sub-umbrella, but 
with occasional intervals of quietude. I observe that 
at the beginning of contraction after repose, the action 
of one side is frequently not simultaneous with that 
of the opposite, but presently they become so. 

At night I tried its luminous power. When I 





tapped the glass jar in Tvhich two specimens were 
floating at the surface, with my finger-nails, instantly 
each became brilliantly visible as a narrow ring of 
light, th'e whole marginal canal becoming luminous. 
On mv touchinsf them with the end of a stick, the 
light became more vivid, and round spots appeared 
here and there in the ring, of intense lustre and of a 
greenish-blue tint. These were, I doubt not, the ten- 
tacle-bulbs, and any one of them would be excited to 
this intensity by my touching that part of the margin 
with the stick. The luminosity of the ring was not 
so evanescent as in some species, lasting several 
seconds, and continuing to be renewed as often as I 
molested the animal. The two circles of light, two 
inches or more in diameter, were very beautiful as 
they moved freely in the water, sinking or rising ac- 
cording as they were touched, now seen in full rotun- 
dity, now shrinking to an oval, or to a line, as either 
turned sidewise to the eve : and reminded me of the 
rings of glory in the pictures of the Italian school, 
round the heads of saints. 

A very fine Mquorea has lately been found by 
Professor Forbes inhabiting the Scottish seas, and 
has been described by him under the name of 
JEquorea Forshalii, in a Memoir read before the 
Zoological Society of London. The present differs 
in many important particulars from that species, 
which I think it surpasses in beauty, and nearly equals 
in size. The proportionate thickness of the umbrella 
and sub-umbrella; the radiating canals, in the one 
abruptly, in the other very gradually merging into 
the stomach ; the simply furhelowed lips of the sto- 


mach in one, and the angular ciliated processes in 
the other ; the numher of the radiating canals and of 
the tentacles : the colour of the former, violet in one, 
roseate in the other ; the pendent menibranes that are 
attached to them in the one case, and not in the 
other; the colour of the stomach, foxy-brown in the 
one, rose-pink in the other; and the difference in the 
ftize of the tentacles and their hulhs in the two cases ; 
— are diversities so prominent and ohvious, that I 
hesitate not for a moment in pronouncing the two 
species distinct. I cannot any better succeed in 
identifying my beautiful Medusa with any of the same 
genus that I can find described by foreign authors. 
I therefore propose to distinguish the present species 
as Mquorea Forhesiana, in unfeigned honour and 
respect for a naturalist of the highest eminence, 
whose pen and pencil have alike served to elucidate, 
above all his compeers, these very lovely forms. 


Throughout the autumn the sea around Ilfracombe 
was thickly peopled by that charming little Medusa, 
Turris neglecta. It was found in the quiet rock-pools 
between the tides, in the harbour, and in the open sea, 
so that the net could scarcely be dipped without 
bringing up one or more, looking like " beads of coral" 
on the muslin. And when put into a glass vessel of 
sea-water, few sights could be more pleasing than a 
dozen of these tiny gems stretching their delicate 
tentacles, and shooting along by vigorous strokes in 
various directions through the clear element. Nor 


was it difficult to protract the pleasure ; for the little 
creatures are kept alive with great ease for many 
days. (See Plate XIII. fig. 6, nat. size ; fig. 7. 

My first acquaintance mth the species was made on 
August 28th. A tiny specimen, not more than -^th of 
an inch in height, was caught among other Medusae 
off* the little cove of Wigmouth. This is a heautiful 
little nook for bathing, being quite unfrequented, 
about two miles from the town, and having a smooth 
sandy beach evenly sloping down, without rocks, ex- 
cept at each side, where rocky walls inclose it about 
fifty yards apart. These rocky sides projecting into 
the sea allow of our walking out on their points and 
ledges close to the water s edge. Here I stood, and 
with a muslin net at the end of a pole dipped for the 
smaller Medusae that were enjoying the afternoon sun 
at the smooth clear surface. Many of these the rays 
of the sun made visible against the dark depths, and 
such I could select ; but the more minute kinds were 
not perceptible, and these I could only dip for at a 
venture, unconscious of their presence, until the ever- 
sion of the net in the collecting jar discovered them 
as prisoners. 

This pigmy Turris was inert when T examined it ; 
the gelatinous umbrella turbid and almost opaque, 
and the peduncle large and dull crimson. But in the 
course of the next day considerable alteration had. 
taken place in its appearance. (Plate XIII. fig. 8). 
The margin was contracted and turned back, exposing 
a great part of the peduncle, which had become both 
thicker and longer; its redness was also more intense 

H 2 


and inclined to orange, and many oval gemmules of 
dark lake-crimson, or purple, were seen in its sub- 
stance. On the floor of the cell in which it was con- 
fined were more than a dozen of the gemmules already 
escaped ; I at first supposed them eggs, but on closer 
examination, found that they were active little swim- 
ming creatures with a will of their own ; that they 
were in fact gemmules, perfectly oval in form, about 
inch in lengfth, and of a fine lake hue : their whole 

100 •'"^" '" ^-"O' 

surface covered with vibratile cilia, by means of which 
they glided about with an even quick motion. (See 
%. 9). 

Two days afterwards these gemmules were still 
active, and possessed the power of locomotion. They 
were not perceptibly changed in appearance, except 
that they seemed a little larger. 

On the 4th Sept. I noticed one lying at the bottom 
of the phial in which I had put them. I extracted it 
by means of a glass tube, and found that its colour 
had become paler, being now of a rose-pink, that its 
surface was irregularly granulose as if decomposing, 
and that motion had ceased. 

On the same day I took two specimens about -^ in. 
high, brilliantly conspicuous from the orange coloured 
or pale vermillion ovaries studded with large ova of a 
■£\g\\ purjyle hue. The umbrella is remarkably turbid, 
being scarcely more than pellucid, and appearing 
quite white against a dark background. When rest- 
ing in a phial of water, the tentacles are elongated, 
like white threads of an equal thickness throughout, 
and are extended in every direction, some perpen- 
dicularly upwards, some downwards, and some arching 


outwards. Thus it lies quite motionless, but on the 
slightest jar being given to the vessel, or to the table 
on which it stands, all the tentacles at the same in- 
stant are contracted into minute contorted balls, so 
suddenly that it seems the work of magic. If undis- 
turbed, however, they are quickly unrolled again? 
almost as quickly as they were contracted. If the tenta- 
cles when thus extended are carefully examined, they 
are seen to be slightly club-shaped at their extremities. 

The tentacles in this species, when subjected to 
pressure, are resolved into a multitude of minute oval 
granules set close together, without any variation of 
density in different parts. Their length is not more 
than -^^ inch. I suppose these, from analogy, to be 
filiferous capsules, though their minuteness prevents 
me from seeing (with a power of 300) more than an 
evanescent indication of the filiferous cavity ; and the 
plates of the compressorium were not able to produce 
a projection of the filament. 

The lips of the peduncle are furnished with capsules 
exactly similar, crowded together in groups, and (as 
it appears to me) forming little tubercles, from which 
their points diverge in every direction. 

The motion of the Medusse through the water seems 
to be performed on the same principle as that of the 
larva of the Dragonfly; viz. by a jet of water forcibly 
expelled, and impinging on the surrounding fluid. 
In Turris, whose motions, owing to its muscular 
development, are very energetic, the jet is very distinct 
and strong. This appears to be the modus operandi : 
four muscular bands, as Prof. Forbes has shown, pass 
across the surface of the sub-umbrella, from the root 


of the peduncle to the margin. This course is not a 
straight hut a curved one. When therefore these 
bands are simultaneously and forcibly contracted in 
length, they are drawn from a curved into a straight 
line, and the cavity which was bell-shaped becomes 
more conical, and its capacity is considerably dimin- 
ished ; a portion of the water which it before held is 
therefore driven out at the mouth, and by its reaction 
forces the animal forward with a jerk in the opposite 
direction. I think, however, that the action of the 
radiating bands of muscle is aided by circular bands 
lining the sub-umbrella, as well as by the marginal 
one ; for when a Turris in strong contractions is at- 
tentively watched in an upright position, there are 
seen indrawings of the sides from the perpendicular at 
every contraction, that the shortening of the radiating 
bands is not sufficient to account for. 

Fig. 8 represents a Turris in the state of oviposit- 
ing; the peduncle enormously swollen and become 
globose, with its lower part showing the four orange 
ovaries, distended with purple gemmules. It lies on 
its side on the bottom, the four lips protruded at one 
extremity, and around the other the diminished and 
reverted umbrella gathered in small vesicular puckers. 
In this condition one would not recognise it as a 
Medusa, if not familiar with it."^' The oval purple 

* Of the scores of this species that I have kept, this was the common, 
and thcrefoi-e, I presume, the natural, termination of life. JVIrs. Davis, 
in the interesting note of one kept by her, communicated to the Ann. 
N. II., vol. vii, alludes to it. " At the end of a fortnight one of my pets 
turned itself inside outwards, and remained in this state for some time, 
when it died, and left only a few floculent particles at the bottom of the 
vessel." I do not doubt that if the sediment had been carefully ex- 
amined with a microscope, the intelligent observer would have dis- 
covered among it many of the crimson oval gemmules. 


gemmules (fig. 9) seem to escape from the walls of the 
ovaries, working their way out at the sides. They 
drop down on the bottom of the vessel, where they 
move about slowly for a while, to no great extent, by 
means of their vibratile cilia. 

All through September, as this species was very 
numerous in the harbour and in the neio-hbourinsr 
coves, I procured great numbers of them, most of 
which I placed in a deep cylindrical glass vessel, — 
the chimney of a lamp, in fact, with a plate of glass 
cemented across one end for a bottom. By examining 
this bottom-plate from beneath with a lens, I found 
early in September that a good many of the gemmules 
had afl&xed themselves to it, and were changing their 
form. By watching them, I ascertained the following 
facts. The gemmule, having adhered to the glass 
grows out into a lengthened form, variously knobbed 
and swollen, and frequently dividing into two branches, 
the whole adhering closely to the glass. After a day 
or two's growth in this manner, a perpendicular stem 
begins to shoot from some point of this creeping root, 
and soon separates into four straight, slender, slightly 
divergent tentacles, which shoot to a considerable 
length. The whole is of a crimson hue, with the 
exception of the growing extremities of the creeping- 
root, which are pellucid white. The little creature is 
now a Pol}^;)e of four tentacles. (See fig. 10). 

I could not follow the development farther, for 
though I had perhaps, a dozen in this stage, on the 
bottom of the glass, they all died without farther 
growth. And though, for weeks after, many gemmules 
were deposited, and I could see plenty every day 


crawling about the glass, not one manifested the least 
inclination to beconte adherent, or to grow into a 
Polype. Indeed, they differed in appearance from 
those first produced, for these were all true planules, 
being elongated and produced at one end into a blunt 
point, with considerable power of change in the 

When we look at a lovely object like this, we are 
conscious of a positive enjoyment, arising from the 
gratification of our sense of beauty ; a sort of appe- 
tite, if I may so call it, implanted in our nature by 
the beneficent Creator, expressly for our satisfaction. 
The garden which the Lord God prepared for unfallen 
man was furnished wdth " every tree that was pleasant 
to the sight," as well as " good for food." And surely 
it is not too much to suppose that even in the Infinite 
Mind of God himself there is a quality analogous to 
this in us, the sense of material beauty, the approval 
of what is in itself lovely in form and colour and 
arrangement, and pleasure in the contemplation of it ; 
distinct from and independent of the question of 
relative fitness or moral excellence. If such a suppo- 
sition needed proof, I would simply adduce the pro- 
fuse existence of beauty in created things, and refer 
to the word that "For His pleasure they are, and 
were created." 

But there is another point of view from which a 
Christian, — by which expression I mean one who by 
believing on the Lord Jesus Christ has passed from 
death unto life, and not one who puts on the title as 
he would a garment, merely for convenience or cus- 
tom's sake — looks at the excellent and the beautiful 

A christian's interest in nature. 355 

in nature. He has a personal interest in it all ; it is 
a part of his own inheritance. As a child roams 
over his father's estate, and is ever finding some quiet 
nook, or clear pool, or foaming waterfall, some lofty 
avenue, some bank of sweet flowers, some picturesque 
or fruitful tree, some noble and wide-spread prospect, 
— how is the pleasure heightened by the thought ever 
recurring, — All this will be mine by and by ! And 
though he may not understand all the arrangements, 
nor fathom the reasons of all the work that he sees 
going on, he knows that all enhances the value of the 
estate, which in due time will be his own possession. 

So with the Christian. The sin-pressed earth, 
groaning and labouring now under the pressure of the 
Fall, is a part of the inheritance of the Lord Jesus, 
bought with his blood. He has paid the price of its re- 
demption, and at the appointed time will reign over it. 
But when the Lord reigneth, his people shall reign 
too; and hence their song is, "Thou hast redeemed 

us to God by thy blood, and we shall reign on the 

earth." For unto the angels hath He not put in sub- 
jection the world to come, but unto Him who though 
Son of God is likewise Son of Man, — even to Him 
in association with the "many sons" whom He is 
bringing to glory. 

And thus I have a right to examine, with as great 
minuteness as I can bring to the pleasant task, con- 
sistently with other claims, what are called the works 
of nature. I have the very best right possible, the 
right that flows from the fact of their being all mine, 
— mine not indeed in possession, but in sure reversion- 
And if any one despise the research as mean and little. 


I reply that I am scanning the plan of my inheritance. 
And when T find any tiny object rooted to the rock, or 
swimming in the sea, in which I trace with more than 
common measure the grace and delicacy of the Master 
Hand, I may not only give Him praise for his skill 
and wisdom, but thanks also, for that He hath 
taken the pains to contrive, to fashion, to adorn 
4ihis, for me. 


I have the pleasure of announcing a new animal of 
much elegance, which I believe to be of a hitherto 
unrecognised form. I shall describe it under the 
appellation oiJohnstonella Catharina. (Plate XXV). 

Body f inch long, ^ inch in greatest diameter, flat, 
thin, as transparent and colourless as glass. 

Head dilated on each side into two lobes, which are 
flat, pointed, and leaf-like, extending laterally to a 
considerable distance. Along the posterior pair are 
soldered a pair of excessively long, slender antennae, 
tapering to a fine point ; they appear simple unjointed 
filaments, directed divergently backwards to a greater 
length than the body, and incapable of change in 
direction. The basal moiety of their length is invest- 
ed with a loose skin, which corrugates into folds. 

Eyes two, black, small, on the summit of the head, 
between the posterior lobes : a line of minute black 
specks runs down the middle of the neck behind 
the eves. 

Body narrow at each extremity, widening in the mid- 
dle : furnished on each side with sixteen fin-like narrow 
lobes, each of which bears at its extremity two oval 




branchial (?) leaves, set on obliquely. The ultimate 
pairs diminish gradually, and are succeeded by a few 
pairs of rudimentary processes on each side of a 
slender tail. 

Viscera, a simple, clear, rather wide canal running 
through the whole length; ordinarily parallel sided, 
but sometimes constricted so as to form a succession 
of spindle-shaped divisions, which pass from the head 
to the tail in rather slow pulsations, like the dorsal 
vessel of a caterpillar. A thick oesophageal proboscis 
was once protruded from the mouth, of an ob-conic 
form, with a large somewhat four-sided orifice obliquely 
terminal. No other internal structure was visible, 
notwithstanding the .perfect transparency of the 

The elegant form, the crystal clearness, and th^^ 
sprightly, graceful movements of this little swimmer 
in the deep sea, render it a not altogether unfit vehicle 
for the commemoration of an honoured name in 
marine zoology. 

The skilful pencil of Mrs. Johnston, employed in 
the delineation of the interesting forms that stand on 
the verge of animal life, has succeeded in presenting 
them to us w'ith peculiar truth and beauty ; and has 
rendered an invaluable aid to the verbal descriptions 
of her indefatigable and eminent husband. I venture 
respectfully to appropriate to this marine animal, 
the surname and christian name of Mrs. Catharine 
Johnston, as a personal tribute of gratitude for the 
great aid which I have derived from her engravings in 
the study of zoophytology. 

Three specimens of the Johnsto?iella have come 



into my possession ; all of whicli were dipped from 
the surface of the sea off the harbour of Ilfracombe, 
about the end of August. In a glass jar their motions 
were excessively vivacious; they swam with great 
swiftness by the rapid vibration of the lateral fins ; 
so incessantly that it was with the utmost difficulty I 
could examine them with the microscope. They darted 
through the water in all directions, across and around 
the jar; and when they rested, their translucency 
rendered them almost invisible. They soon died in 
captivity ; I think I did not keep one of them longer 
than the second day. 

The form of this animal is so anomalous that it is 
difficult to assign it a place in the system of nature. 
At first sight it has somewhat the aspect of a 
Branchiopod Crustacean; but the evertible oesophagus, 
the numerous lateral lobes, and the leaf-like expan- 
sions with which they are terminated, rather indicate 
an affinity with the Annelida. It is possible that it 
may prove a larva of some known form in this Class. 
The specimens that I have found, however, presented 
no differences in size or development. 

My description and figure are both less complete 
in details than I could have wished to render them, 
owing to the agility and to the evanescence of the 
animal. I hoped to supply the deficiencies by the 
study of other specimens, but this hope was disap- 
pointed. The structure and form of the leaf-like 
appendages of the lateral lobes, in particular, need 
further revision. 

Fig. 1 represents it of the natural size, fig. 2, mag- 



Sept. Si h. — In the clear quiet water of the hathing 
pool I dipped this afternoon many Medusae, almost 
all of these two species, Tliaumantias pilosella and 
Willsia stellata. One of the former presented a curi- 
ous deviation from ordinary structure, in that one of 
the radiating vessels was divided into three branches 
at about one third of its length from the marginal 
canal, the ovary likewise branched correspondingly. 
The other vessels were quite normal. 

Less numerous than this, but sufficiently common, 
was the pretty Willsia, a little gem, with its six-rayed 
star of vellow ovaries, and its circlet of black eyes. 
(Plate XX, fig. 1). The radiating vessels in this 
species, six in number, are naturally divided into 
branches, each entering the marginal canal by four 
mouths, like the Delta of some great continental river. 
The sub -umbrella is not evenly round, but lobed, 
the radiating vessels running along deep depressions 
or valleys, between which the surface rises into hills. 
(See fig. 2). 

I found in one of the Willsice a curious parasitic 
Leech. I know not on what part, for I first discover- 
ed it after I had subjected the Medusa to the compres- 
sorium. It is an active little animal, with two suck- 
ers, of which the anterior is imperfect and mouth-like, 
and the posterior is circular, produced into a thick 
wart, and set on the ventral surface at about one 
third of the whole length from the tail. There are eight 


eyes, very minute, colourless, and set around the 
frontal margin of the anterior disk; the anus is 
terminal. The ovary is large, and filled with a number 
of clear, globular, highly refractile ova. Close-set 
transverse annuli were conspicuous on the fore half of 
the body. 

When the Medusa was subjected to pressure, I 
observed several vesicles of exceedingly subtle mem- 
brane, loosely wrinkled, containing a number (varying 
from one or two to thirty) of clear oval bodies, about 
jT^th inch in longest diameter. (See lig. 3). The 
vesicles were placed at the end of a short canal, or 
neck, or footstalk, of similar membrane, originating 
from the marginal canal, and freely standing up on 
the outside of the umbrella, as I believe. Each of 
the oval granules had a body within it, which I at 
first supposed a cell, but in one I distinctly saw that 
it was composed of a number of oblique parallel lines 
(See fig. 4). On pressure being increased, all the 
oval capsules simultaneously shot forth, from one end, 
a thread of great tenuity and of excessive length. I 
could trace them to about fifty times the length of the 
oval, and am not at all sure that I saw their extremity, 
for with a power of 300 they became undistinguishable 
farther. The thread, in an instant so brief as to be 
inappreciable, assumed perfect straightness, (except a 
slight curve in some cases), just as if composed of 
some highly elastic substance, that had hitherto been 
compressed But close examination showed an appear- 
ance like that of a corrugated sheath enveloping it 
for a considerable portion of its length, perhaps one 
third, from the oval capsule (See fig. 5). 

Plate XX. 










m \ 

w / .? 


iMOoss^. del #■•" Uth 

Prcntcd hyjailTncmdel&^XQlujn, 



This was the first occasion on which I had an 
opportunity of seeing the iiliferous capsules, as these 
bodies are called, for though I have described, in 
previous parts of this volume, similar organs, the 
_ actual observations so recorded were, in point of time, 
subsequent to this. 

The presence of these aggregations of capsules 
appears to be subject to much variation. In some 
specimens of the Willsia that I examined, there were 
several, perhaps five or six ; in many I could not by 
strict searching, find more than one or two solitary 
capsules, seemingly scattered in the substance of the 
umbrella near the margin, yet shooting out the thread 
on pressure, exactly like those aggregated in a vesicle. 
But perhaps in these they may have been present, 
though overlooked, in a situation where I afterwards 
found them numerous in each specimen that I ex- 
amined, viz. within the substance of the double 
ovaries, and chiefly near their termination. In each 
lobe there were many capsules, not arranged nor 
gathered into vesicles, but apparently loose in the 
yellow granular substance. But none of these had 
developing ova ; only one that I examined had ova 
in the form of transparent globules with a central clear 
nucleus ; and that specimen I had destroyed before I 
had detected this situation for the capsules. However, 
in that specimen I know that, after pressure, I could 
find no more than a single capsule, all over the 

These facts suggested the thought that possibly 
these organs that look like ovaries may in some cases 
be testes, and the filiferous capsules be organs of 

I 3 


conjunction. I do not tliink them analogous to Sper- 
matozoa, though these appear to be present also ; for 
when the ovaries (or testes) gave way under pressure, 
their substance contained with the coloured granules 
a multitude of excessively minute bodies with spon- 
taneous vibratile motion. They were evidently 
oblong, but too minute for me to discern their tails, 
if they had any. 


This Coast favourable for Oceanic Productions— The Red-lined 
Medusa — Its Form and Structure — The Eyes — The Fur- 
belows—A parasitic Shrimp — Its supposed Young — Beauty 
of the Medusa — Its Prehensile Powers — Capture of Prey — 
Curious Mode of eating — Experiments — New Use of the 
Furbelows — Development of the Eggs — Their Structure — , 
Thread-Capsules — Synonymy — The White Pelagia — The 
Mantis Shrimp — Its spectral Figure and strange Actions — 
Its Weapons — The Caddis Shrimp — The Tiny Oceania — 
Busk's Thaumantias— The Fairy's Cap. 


The conformation of the Bristol Channel, and of 
the adjacent coasts, offers peculiar facilities for the 
study of those marine animals whose proper sphere of 
existence is the wide ocean. The prevailing westerly 
winds, driving up the surface-waters of the Atlantic, 
impel them along the shores of Portugal, Spain and 
France, whence a large portion passes through the 
English Channel into the German Ocean. But 
another large portion, turned northward hy the pro- 
jecting point of Cornwall, finds itself in a vast funnel, 
between the Irish and English coasts, which has two 
terminations, the one open and leading into the 
North Sea, the other closed and confined within the 


narrowing limits of the Bristol Channel. Each of 
these three localities, — the shores of the English 
Channel, the Irish Sea, and the Bristol Channel, — 
receives its portion of oceanic productions brought by 
the winds and currents ; but the former two are open 
passages, wdiile the last-named, being closed, retains 
such as are brought within its boundaries. And the 
southern side of the Channel is likely to receive the 
greatest part of such deposits ; for the winds setting 
them upon the Cornish coast, the. current would natu- 
rally follow the bending line of the shore; and thus the 
rocky coves and inlets of North Devon might be 
expected to be more than usually rich in those rare 
and accidental stragglers, which the waves bring in 
from their roamings in the boundless sea. 

So I have proved it. Two new species of JEquorea 
I had already found here, a genus of which but one 
example had been recorded as British ; and I have 
now to add a magnificent species of Chrijsaora, which, 
though not new, appears to be rare on the British 
coast. It occurred to me on the IJzthof September, at 
low w^ater, embayed in a little tide-pool in the rocks 
below the Tunnels, where it attracted my attention 
by its vigorous and regular pulsations. (See Plate 
XXVII, where it is represented about half the natu- 
ral size). 

The umbrella (fig. I.) is about three inches in 
diameter, depressed and sub-conic in expansion, 
hemispheric in contraction, pellucid and nearly 
colourless, but tinged about the summit with a deli- 
cate flush of rose-colour. The surface is slightly 
frosted or tomentose, and studded with a multitude 


of minute orange warts, most conspicuous in the cen- 
tral parts. About thirty-two fine orange lines radiate 
from near the centre, which are lost before they reach 
the circumference. The margin is cut into thirty-two 
concave ovate lobes, a tentacle being between every two, 
with the exception of eight of the interspaces sym- 
metrically disposed, where a pedicled ocellus takes the 
place of a tentacle. The pair of lobes which inclose 
each ocellus are larger than the rest, and are of a rich 
sienna-brown ; the other lobes are not associated in 
pairs, are smaller, and are of a paler tint of the same 
warm colour. 

The tentacles, twenty-four in number, are all alike : 
their substance is pellucid-white with the tips crim- 
son; the latter, however, are very liable to be torn 
off. Their base can scarcely be called bulbous, but 
this part is dilated into an ovate form in one direction 
(viz. that from the centre outward) and thin in the oppo- 
site. They are long and attenuated, being frequently 
stretched to the length of a foot, and as slender for 
most of their length as the finest sewing-thread- 
They are waved and contorted in various free and ele- 
gant curves, but are never drawn up into spiral coils; 
their contraction, which is sometimes so great as to 
reduce them to an inch in length, being effected 
entirely by the shortening and thickening of their 
substance. They are very adhesive, but I did not 
find in them any power of stinging. 

The eyes, eight in number, are minute oval bodies, 

opaque yellowish -white, each placed at the tip of a 

rather long, slender footstalk, depending perpendicu- 

arly from the margin of the umbrella, and protected 


by a tubular fold of the common pellucid membrane, 
which extends to about double its length. (See fig. 
2). On crushing one of these eyes with graduated 
pressure beneath the microscope, it was most interes- 
ting to find its substance entirely composed (so far 
as I could perceive) of an infinite multitude of regu- 
lar colourless crystals, the greater number of which 
were short six-sided j)ris7ns, and, as I thought, with 
convex extremities. (See fig. 3). Of this latter 
point, however, I am not quite sure ; but their hex- 
agonal form was perfectly distinct ; and I could not 
but conclude these to be true visual lenses, perhaps 
as perfect as those of Crustacea or Insects. Their 
diameter was about TTT^T^th of an inch. 


The sub-umbrella agrees in general form with the 
umbrella, but is much more depressed. From its cen- 
tre depends an ample globose peduncle, which after 
being constricted, terminates in four membranous 
arms of excessive delicacy and beauty. Each arm 
consists of a cylindrical, or rather insensibly tapering, 
process, resembling a tentacle in length and slender- 
ness. All along one side of this filament is attached 
a ribbon of pellucid membrane, more delicate than the 
finest cambric : it is upwards of an inch wide above, 
but gradually tapers to a point ; and is so attached by 
one of its edges to the filament, as to fall into ample 
folds or furbelows, exactly like the flounces of a 
muslin dress. The grace and beauty which these 
appendages impart to the animal can scarcely be 
imagined, by those who have not witnessed a similar 
spectacle. Sometimes, indeeed, they are contracted 
into a shapeless mass, only two or three inches in 


length, so puckered and confused as to render their 
disentanglement apparently hopeless ; hut in a few 
moments we see their graceful folds, all separated, 
stretching their taper length to a distance of ten 
inches from their hase, and waving slowly through 
the water with every contraction of the ever-pulsating 
umbrella. The colour of these elegant organs is 
white at their upper part ; hut a faint tinge of rose- 
red becomes perceptible about their middle, and 
gradually increases in intensity till it becomes at 
their extremities a decided pink. This hue, however, 
seems in some way to be dependent on the will of the 
animal, frequently becoming stronger or fainter in the 
course of a few minutes. 

The interior of the peduncle is divided by four 
perpendicular septa into as many ample chambers, 
which are visible from above. Other folds of mem- 
brane partially cross their area, causing them at times 
to appear six or more in number. From beneath, 
large round openings are seen communicating with 
the interior of these chambers, into which the sur- 
rounding water is thus freely admitted. 

Whatever other purposes these cavities may fulfil in 
the economy of the Medusa, they serve the conveni- 
ence of another animal of widely different organiza- 
tion. A little shrimp-like creature, about half-an-inch 
in length, with large lustrous green eyes (Hyperia 
mediisarum) , makes these chambers his residence, 
dwelling in them as in so many spacious and commo- 
dious apartments, of which he takes possession, I am 
afraid, without asking leave of the landlord, or paying 
him even a peppercorn rent. There however, he 


snugly ensconces himself, and feels so mucli at home, 
that he is not afraid to leave his dwelling now and 
then, to take a swim in the free w^ater ; returning to 
his chamber after his exercise. 

That this is the natural habit of life followed by 
this Crustacean, I have no doubt. There were three 
or four specimens on this Ckrt/saora, and I have 
found it parasitic on other large Medusae. But there 
were also on the one I am describing a vast number 
of minute white specks, which on examination proved 
to be little Crustacea, and, as I suspect, the larvse of 
this species. They are not larger than a grain of 
sand, shaped somewhat like a toad, with the abdomen 
distinctly separated, narrow, and bent abruptly under, 
in the manner of the Brachyura. (See Plate XXII. 
fig. 15). 

To return, however, to our Medusa. Though this 
genus is described as peculiarly phosphorescent, I 
found this specimen scarcely at all luminous. A 
very slight and dull flash or two was all that I could 
obtain, with repeated pushings and other disturbances 
of the animal in the dark. . 

The appearance of this fine Medusa in captivity 
was noble and imposing. I kept it for several days 
in a deep glass vase of clear sea-water, where its 
chestnut-lobed umbrella, throbbing with a continual 
pulsation, throwing its circle of hanging tentacles 
into a succession of serpentine undulations, and its 
long four-fold fringe of gauze-like flounces, floating 
through the water, formed a sight which the beholders 
were never weary of admiring, and from which we 
could scarcely withdraw our eyes. Its pulsations 


were perfectly regular, leisurely, and energetic ; yet 
their effect in moving the body seemed feeble and 
laborious ; every stroke, for example, raising the disk 
an almost inappreciable distance, when it wished to 
ascend from the bottom to the surface ; forming a 
marked contrast to the minute but agile Turris 
neglecta, which shoots at every contraction a distance 
three or four times its own diameter. 

The Chrysaora does not rest at the surface as some 
Medusae do ; but occasionally allows itself to sink 
slowly to the bottom, where (or but slightly elevated 
above it) it intermits for a while its laboui'ed con- 

The furbelows, as well as the tentacles, are organs 
of prehension, used for the capture of prey. I have 
some reason to believe that the former, at least near 
their origin, perform an active part in digestion- 
Casually touching the animal with a stick, not only 
did several of the tentacles entwine round it, but the 
furbelows also presently adhered to it, partially em- 
bracing it; and I became conscious that the latter 
were drawing the stick towards the peduncle with 
considerable force ; nor was it an easy matter to 
liberate it from the firm grasp. This circumstance 
suggested the thought that the animal might be 
hungry, especially as it had been in my possession 
several days without food. 

I determined therefore to give it a dinner ; and, that 
there might be wanting no incentive to appetite, one 
which a prime minister would not have disdained — a 
Whitebait dinner. I had just before netted in a tide- 
pool, half a dozen of these brilliant little fishes ; and 


one of these I devoted to my experiment, and the 
Medusa s appetite. The fish was already dead, and I 
had no difficulty in guiding it so that it might touch 
the tentacles. These were immediately, as I had ex- 
pected, entangled around the fish, and so were the 
furbelows. At first I was not aware that anything 
more was going on, for the weight of the fish had 
carried it to the bottom of the vessel, and the delicate 
membranes were lying in confused heaps over it. 

After some time, however, I perceived that the fish 
had moved from that part of the furbelows whicli had 
first seized it ; for whereas at first not more than 
half- an -inch lay between that part of one of the fur- 
belows which embraced the head of the fish, and its 
extremity, the head was now several inches higher up 
towards the peduncle. This induced me to watch it 
closely. The tentacles had now no part in the matter ; 
having delivered the prey to the furbelows, they had 
disentangled themselves, and were now sprawling 
loosely about, as usual. Three of the furbelows had 
grasped the fish; one embracing the head, another 
the tail, and a third the middle of the body; the 
fourth had not touched it at all, and the middle one 
presently relinquished its hold, resigning the task to 
the other two. These embraced their respective parts 
in the most curious manner ; not being twined about 
merely, but the fleshy membrane adhering to the 
surface of the fish, filling every hollow, and rounding 
every projection of its burden, so closely as to manifest 
not only the sensitiveness, but also the muscularity, 
of these filmy organs. 

It was easy to perceive the constant though slow 


progression of the fish upward ; the surface of the 
furbelow, with its closely adhering plaits and pucker- 
ings, being moved over the fish, with an uniform 
gliding, like that of the foot of a mollusk over the 
surface on which it is crawling. The crustacean larvae 
already spoken of, like minute white specks scattered 
about the furbelows, enabled me distinctly to mark 
the advance of the fish, which proceeded at the rate 
of about a line in a minute. The contractions of the 
umbrella went on with the usual force and precision 
during the whole time ; and as the fish was gradually 
brought nearer to the umbrella, the furbelows acquired 
the power to lift it from the bottom, and to suspend 
it between them in a horizontal position. 

After two hours had elapsed from the first seizure, 
the fish was brought to the mouth of the peduncle, 
about half-an-inch above the separation of the furbe- 
lows ; and where it remained, without any further per- 
ceptible change, for a full hour. The head of the fish 
alone was so much elevated as this, for the furbelow 
at the tail had latterly ceased to act, while the other 
had proceeded ; and consequently the fish had become 
nearly perpendicular. Its head was closely embraced 
by the lips of the peduncle, and the peduncle itself 
was protruded in a remarkable manner, by the partial 
inversion of the umbrella, the upper surface of which 
was slightly concave, though the margin was bent 
over, and continued its contractions. 

At length, after about an hour, the Medusa slowly 
relinquished its prey, which fell again to the bottom. 
To my surprise, however, I could not discover, on 
examination, that the digestive efi'orts of the Chry- 


saora had produced the least alteration in the appear- 
ance of the fish : the surface of which was as clean 
and its edges as smooth and well defined, as they 
had heen three hours before. Yet I would not hence 
too hastily conclude that no nutriment whatever had 
been extracted by the pores of the stomachal membrane. 
It seemed possible, too, that the weight and unwieldy 
dimensions of the fish may have disappointed the 
animal of its expected feast ; and that a smaller 
morsel might have been more completely inclosed. 

Acting on the last suggestion, I ofi'ered to the 
Chrysaora, a day or two after the above experiment, 
a piece of cooked meat about half-an-inch square. It 
was caught by the furbelows, and slowly passed up to 
their base, where it was closely embraced for several 
hours. I know not how long it remained there, but 
the next morning I found that it had been received 
during the night into one of the four cavities, into 
which the peduncle is divided. It was visible through 
the pellucid integuments from above, and without any 
intervening substance from below, through the oval 
aperture of the chamber, which was not closed upon 
it. Here it remained two days and nights, being 
dropped to the bottom in the course of the third eve- 
ning. I examined the morsel ; it was white from the 
long maceration, but was not decomposed, nor sur- 
rounded by any mucus, as are the rejecta of the 
Actiniae, &c. ; nor had it the least putrescent smell, a 
circumstance which appears to me to prove that a 
true digestive process had operated on it. For if the 
morsel had lain in the water for that time, it would 
undoubtedly have become offensive, whereas the gas- 


trie fluids are known to have an antiseptic power in 
the Vertebrate animals. 

After I had kept this Chrysaora for about a week 
its manners underwent a change. It no longer swam 
about freely in the water by means of its pumping 
contractions, nor was its appearance that of a um- 
brella. It began to turn itself inside out, and at 
length assumed this form permanently, its shape 
being that of a very elegant vase or cup, with the rim 
turned over and the tentacles depending loosely from 
it, the furbelows constituting a sort of foot. The 
latter were new put to a new use : the animal began 
habitually to rest near the bottom of the vessel, or 
upon the broad fronds t)f Iridaa, which were growing 
in the water and preserving its purity ; but occasion- 
ally it would rise midway to the surface, and hang 
by one or two of the furbelows. A fold or two of the 
latter would come to the top of the water, and dilate 
upon the surface into a broad flat expansion, exactly 
like the foot of a swimming Mollusk ; from this the 
Medusa would hang suspended in an inverted position. 
All the other furbelows, and the parts of this one that 
lay below the expansion, floated as usual through the 
water, except that, on some occasions, an accessorv 
power was obtained by pressing a portion of another 
furbelow to the side of the glass, and making it ad- 
here, just like the part that was exposed to the surface 
air. The texture of the furbelov»^s when thus stretched 
smooth w^as exquisitely delicate. 

The eversion of the sub -umbrella was connected 
with the maturing of the ovaries. I had observed 
that in Turris the development of the ova was inva- 

K 2 


riably accompanied by their protrusion, and the 
shrinking up of the umbrella ; and in the case of this 
Chrysaora, I found the ovaries assuming a greater 
size and opacity. They formed frill-like expansions 
spread around the interior of the four stomachal cham- 
bers, and now began to protrude from the oval 
apertures in convoluted masses. A portion of one of 
the protruding masses I cut off with fine scissors, 
and submitted it to a magnifying power of 220 

The mass consisted of a plexus of gelatinous tubes, 
very numerous, not a single one many times convolu- 
ted, for the rounded and closed ends of many were 
traceable, though I could not follow any one to its 
other extremity, except where cut oif by the scissors. 
They moved and twisted about, gliding along like so 
many worms, by means of the cilia with which their 
surface was clothed. I could not indeed see the cilia 
themselves, but the uniform currents that swept the 
floating atoms along left no doubt on this point. The 
diameter of the tubes was not equal, but varied from — 
to TTT- inch : and their walls were rather thick. In 

500 ^ 

the mass were scattered a great number of globose 
ova, of granular texture, and yellowish-brown hue ; 
the most mature of which were about -^ inch in dia- 
meter, but others were much smaller, and pellucid in 
the ratio of their immaturity. None appeared to have 
a clear nucleus. Some of the ova were certainly 
vrithin the tubes, and though the greater part appeared 
to lie free among the convoluted mass, and a few 
were loose in the water, I am inclined to attribute 
this entirely to the tubes having been cut across by 


the scissors, causing the escape of the ova. Such as 
were quite loose gave indication of being cihated, in 
that they had a feeble spontaneous motion, a quiver- 
ing oscillation. 

A week afterwards (October 2nd) I again examined 
the ovaries : the one that most protruded was more 
opaque, of a creamy hue. With a lens I perceived 
that the free ends of many of the tubes were project- 
ing, and hanging down like a short fringe of threads, 
with blant tips. I again cut off and isolated a por- 
tion in a watch-glass. The appearance was much 
changed since I examined it last. The tubes, which 
had the same vermicular motion as before, and were 
similarly convoluted, were greatly swollen in irregular 
parts, and contained many ova much more developed 
than before. These were clear globules, yet evidently 
granular, varying from ^^ to ^ inch in diameter. I 
soon found that they were escaping from the ovarian 
tubes, (not however, from the free ends, which were 
slender and contained no ova) ; and after the severed 
fragment had remained a night in the watch-glass a 
great number, of varijing sizes, were found on the 
bottom, moving about. 

Some of these I examined with a power of 300 
diameters. Each was a soft globose body, not quite 
regular, nor even fixed in form, of a clear brownish 
hue, composed of a great number of irregular granules 
aggregated together, which projected from the gene- 
ral outline ; as if a handful of roundish pebbles from 
the shore had been agglutinated by some invisible 
cement into as good a ball as you could make of such 
materials. The globule revolved in all directions on its 


centre, and progressed slowly through the water, with a 
quivering jerking motion, exactly like that of many of 
the compound Monads. I could not detect the cilia 
which produced this motion, hut infer their existence. 
On pressure heing applied to flatten the glohule, each 
component granule was seen to be itself composed of 
a multitude of minute granules. The pressure being 
heightened the primary granules at length separated 
from each other, leaving for an instant angular chan- 
nels between them, w^liich appeared to be occupied 
with a very subtile gelatinous fluid ; and presently 
these granules themselves yielded to the pressure, 
and dissolved each into a vast number of pellucid 
secondary granules of almost inappreciable minute- 

On submitting to pressure portions of the tentacles, 
I found the walls rather thick in proportion to the 
tubular cavity, and moderately densely studded with 
filiferous capsules of great minuteness. Their form 
was perfectly oval, the smaller end being that from 
which the thread projected. The largest were about 
2-g^ inch in length, the smallest about g^ inch, with 
the thread occupying an oval cavity about two-thirds 
of the entire volume. The projected thread from one 
of the largest reached to about -^ inch, or more than 
a hundred times the length of the capsule ; those of 
many of the smallest on the other hand were not more 
than ^^ inch in length, or about eleven times that of 
the capsule. I could not see the least appearance 
of barbs, hairs, or imbrications on the threads 
(fig. 4. represents a large capsule, magnified 300 


The capsules of the furhelows do not differ in size 
or appearance from those of the tentacles ; they are 
however distributed in groups, consisting of from 
thirty to sixty, large and small capsules together ; 
these groups form the minute white specks that are 
seen dotting the whole surface of these organs. None 
were seen in the ovaries. 

Notwithstanding this armature, the species appears 
to have no stinging power appreciable to our senses. 
I passed the back of my finger, where the skin is very 
sensible, over the surface of both tentacles and fur- 
belows. They adhered, indeed, to my skin, but no 
sensation of stinging was felt, nor any other unplea- 

This Medusa lived about three wrecks in a glass 
vase, and died at the end of that time what I may 
^all a natural death ; that of exhaustion from the 
discharge of ova. Reproduction, as is well known, is 
the great object of existence, in many of the inverte- 
brate animals, and also its closing act. It may be 
so with this Medusa. 

In the mean time I found another specimen, closely 
agreeing with the former in appearance, but slightly 
smaller, — floating in one of the nooks of the harbour 
of Ilfracombe. 

The species is doubtless the Cyanea chrysaora of 
Cuvier's Eegne Animal (Edit. 1836) ; of which a 
figure, not very accurate, is given in plate xlvii. The 
editors refer it to Chrysaora cyclonota of Peron and 
Lesueur. It was first described by Borlase in the 
Nat. Hist, of Cornwall ; and his description and 
figure are quite recognisable. 



Two days after the capture of the Chrysaoray I 
obtained, in the hathing-pool near the same spot, a 
species of Pelagia. The disk is about an inch wide. 
The projecting lobes of the umbrella give it, when 
expanding, a hexagonal form. There are eight eyes, 
as in the preceding species ; but only the same num- 
ber of tentacles, instead of twenty four ; these organs 
are white. The peduncle divides into furbelows pro- 
portionally lower down, and the furbelows themselves 
are much more simple, and extend only to about two 
inches in length. The ovaries are not purple, nor 
are the tentacles or the disk tinged with rose-colour ; 
the whole animal being colourless, except for the 
whiteness which arises from the imperfect trans- 
parency oPthe membranes. The umbrella, however, 
is studded with minute and scarcely perceptible red- 
dish warts. 

Messrs. M'Andrew and Forbes have described and 
figured (Annals N. H. 1847, p. 390) a species of 
Pelagia fP. cyanella), which they met with on the 
Cornish coast. It is possible that the animal above 
described may have been a very young specimen of 
the same species ; though the differences are great, 
not only in size and colour, but also in form and pro- 
portions. The umbrella in their P. cya?iella forms 
almost a perfect globe, but in my individual less than 
a hemisphere, resembling in shape that of the Chry- 
saora (See Plate XXVII.) It would be rash, however, 
to constitute a species on a sinr/lc specimen; and 
hence I leave the matter for future investigation. 



One can never take a living specimen of that beau- 
tiful zoophyte Vlumularia cristata, without finding 
its numerous pinnated branches inhabited by curious 
Crustacea of the g;enus Caprella. They are as much 
at home in the tree-like zoophyte, as a family of 
monkeys in their arboreal bowers, and indeed their 
agility as they run from branch to branch, catching 
holAof a twig just within reach and pulling themselves 
in an instant up to it, then stretching out their long 
arms in every direction, strongly remind me of the 
Spider Monkeys of South America. One needs little 
systematic knowledge to see that they are highly pre- 
datory : a glance at their form and manners would 
reveal that fact. Strange spectre-like creatures they 
are I or rather skeleton- like ; with long slender bodies 
composed of few joints, and wide- sprawling limbs set 
at remote distances. And such limbs ! Two pairs of 
stout antennse bristled with stiff spines project from 
the head, then the first and second pairs of legs, (but 
especially the latter,) have the last joint but one de- 
veloped to a great size, while the terminal joint is so 
formed as to shut down upon it just as the blade of a 
clasp-knife does upon the handle. Then to add to 
the efficiency of this instrument of prehension, the 
great joint which represents the haft is armed with 
a double row of spines set at an angle so as to make 
a groove, into which the blade falls, and this latter is 
cut along each side of its edge into fine teeth like 
those of a file. I find several species even on the same 


small fragment of weed, if it be tolerably well peopled 
with Vlumularim or PedicelUnce, some much larger 
than others, and beautifully mottled with transparent 
ruby-colour on a clear horn, and distinguished by 
variations in the relative size, in the shape, and in 
the armature of these formidable weapons ; and there 
is a species larger still, of a dull purplish-red hue- 
But all have pretty much the same manners, except 
that the smaller species are more agile. 

These manners are excessively amusing. The 
middle part of their long body is destitute of hmbs, 
having instead of legs two pairs of oval clear vesicles, 
but the hinder extremity is furnished with three pairs 
of legs armed with spines and a terminal-hooked 
blade like that already described. With these 
hindmost legs the animal takes a firm grasp of the 
twigs of the polypidom, and rears up into the free 
water its gaunt skeleton of a body, stretching wide its 
scythe-like arms, with which it keeps up a see-saw 
motion, swaying its whole body to and fro. Ever 
and anon the blade is shut forcibly upon the grooved 
haft, and woe be to the unfortunate Infusorium, 
or Mite, or Rotifer, that comes within that grasp. 
The whole action, the posture, the figure of the 
animal, and the structure of the limb are so closely 
like those of the tropical genus Mantis among in- 
sects, which T have watched thus taking its prey in 
the Southern United States and the West Indies, that 
I have no doubt passing animals are caught by the 
Crustacean also in this way, though I have not seen 
any actually secured. The antennse, too, at least the 
inferior pair, are certainly, I should think, accessory 


weapons of the animal's predatory warfare. They 
consist of four or five stout joints, each of which is 
armed on its inferior edge with two rows of long stiff 
curved spines, set as regularly as the teeth of a comb, 
the rows divaricating at a rather wide angle. From 
the sudden clutchings of these organs, I have no 
doubt that they too are seizing prey ; and very effect- 
ive implements they must be, for the joints bend 
down towards each other, and the long rows of spines 
interlacing must form a secure prison, like a wire-cage, 
out of which the jaws probably take the victim, when 
the bending in of the antennae has delivered it to 
the mouth. 

But these well-furnished animals are not satisfied 
with fishing merely at one station. As I have said 
above, they climb nimbly and eagerly to and fro, 
insinuating themselves among the branches, and 
dragging themselves hither and thither by the twigs. 
On a straight surface, as when marching (the motion 
is too free and rapid to call it crawling) along the 
stem of a zoophyte, the creature proceeds by loops, 
catching hold with the fore limbs, and then bringing 
up the hinder ones close, the intermediate segments 
of the thin body forming an arch, exactly as the 
caterpillars of geometric moths, such as those for 
example that we see on gooseberry bushes, do. But 
the action of the Crustacean is much more energetic 
then that of the Caterpillar. Indeed all its motions 
strike one as peculiarly full of vigour and energy. 

I have seen the large red species swim, throwing 
its body into a double curve like the letter S, with the 
head bent down, and the hind limbs turned back, the 


body being in an upright position. It was a most 
awkward attempt, and though there was much effort, 
there was little effect. 


On sub -merged tufts of that seaweed that is sold in 
a dry state under the name of Carrageen moss 
fChonclriis crispusj, I have found in considerable 
numbers a Crustacean resembling in many points the 
Gaprella, but belonging to another order of this great 
Class. Without perhaps actually confining itself to 
this particular species of weed, it seems to affect it 
more than any other. Not, how^ever, that you w^ould 
find it on those ample tufts of Chondras that grow in 
shallow rock-pools exposed at half-tide, the fronds of 
which glow at their tips with the most refulgent 
reflections of steel-blue. It must be sought at ex- 
treme low-water, about the sides of rocks that are laid 
bare only at the spring tides of March and September, 
and the alga itself will be masked under a crowd of 
Laomedece, Sertularice, Anguinarice, Pedicelli?i(e, and 
other parasitic zoophytes, and half covered with a 
thick coat of dirty floccose matter, the ejecta, as I 
suppose, of these creatures. 

Among these, and assisting to conceal and meta- 
morphose the plant, you may find a number of conical 
tubes varying from -^ to -yth of an inch in length 
made of a somewhat tough papery or leathery sub- 
stance of a dusky colour and of a rough surface. 
They are stuck upon the fronds of the sea-weed in all 
directions, without any order, some laid along, others 


standing erect ; sometimes singly, sometimes asso- 
ciated. From the open extremity project two pairs 
of stout jointed antennae, both of which are armed on 
their under edge with double rows of spreading spines, 
like those of the interior antennae in Caprella, These 
well-armed organs are affixed to a large oval head just 
in front of two black eyes, and are thrown about 
incessantly, forcibly chitching at the water, or rather 
at whatever may be passing in tbe water, just as 
described above in the kindred and companion species. 
The head ordinarily just projects from the mouth of 
the tube sufficiently to see what is going on without, 
and what prospect there is of a successful throw, but 
sometimes the creature protrudes his first two pairs of 
feet. These, especially the second pair, have a great 
oval joint at the end, (See Plate XXII, fig. 13) with 
a sort of knife-blade shutting on it, all formed on 
the same model as in Caprella, but the next two 
pairs of limbs have the middle joint curiously de- 
veloped into a large projection on the upper side (Fig. 
14). Three more pairs of legs follow, long, hooked 
at the end, and directed backwards, and the body, 
which is arched downwards like that of a shrimp, has 
three pairs of swimming bristles, and terminates in 
two styles. But all these latter details can be seen 
only by opening tbe tube with a couple of needles, 
and extracting the lurking inhabitant ; when you 
may place him in the live-box of your microscope and 
examine him at leisure (See fig. 12). 

The animal in its tube much resembles the larvae 
of the genus I^hryyaiiea, that anglers value under the 
name of Caddis-worms. There, however, the case is 


composed of a mosaic of minute pebbles, bits of shell, 
&c., imbedded in a glutinous silk with which the 
interior is smoothly lined. In our little Crustacean, 
I do not know of what it is made, or how, but it 
seems to be homogeneous, and is certainly of home 
manufacture, and not the tube of a zoophyte surrep- 
titiously obtained, as has been supposed to be the 
case with the Cerapus tuhularis of North America. 
Perhaps, however, closer examination might refute 
the charge of piracy brought against that species. 

Our little animal is somewhat longer than its tube, 
or from 7^ to -g- inch in length. It belongs to the 
genus Cerapus as restricted, but appears to differ 
from either of the species hitherto recognised as 
British : I therefore propose to call it C. Whitei, after 
my esteemed friend Mr. Adam White of the British 


A single specimen occurred in my dip-net the other 
day of a very tiny Medusa, which I cannot certainly 
identify, and which I hardly know how to apportion 
to its proper generic place. It has some resemblance 
to the lovely little Modeeria Jbrmosa, but the number 
and arrangement of its tentacles seem to point out 
the Oceaniad(B as its allies. I do not see the con- 
spicuous museular bands which would indicate it as a 
Turris, and I shall therefore call it an Oceania. I 
describe it in the following terms. (See Plate XIII, 

fig. 11). 

Oceania pusilla. Umbrella mitrate, constricted 

busk:'s thaumantias. 885 

above the middle, with the summit rounded, - inch 
in height. (Fig. 11). Margin with about 21 short 
tentacles, springing from globose, yellowish bulbs, 
each of which carries a red ocellus within. (Fig. 
14). The tentacles are usually contracted, and bent 
upwards. (Fig. 12). 

Sub-umbrella nearly as large as the umbrella; from 
its centre depends an ample membranous peduncle 
somewhat vase-shaped, but seen vertically to be four- 
lobed, each lobe pyriform in transverse section, the 
small ends meeting around a minute square central 
space. (Fig. 13). These lobes are marked with de- 
licate veins, as if the structure were irregularly cellular, 
and are tinged with yellow. The greater part of the 
peduncle is occupied by the ovaries, four in number, 
altogether somewhat pear-shaped, the larger end below, 
and filling the peduncle; they are of an opaque yellow, 
and each contains a nucleus of dark red. The whole 
descends into a flexible many-lobed lip, the extremities 
of which are puckered up, and slightly fimbriated. 

This minute species was energetic in swimming, shoot- 
ing several times its own length at each contraction. 

I have found also on two or three occasions a small 
Thaumantias, with the following characters, (See 
Plate XXIL, Figs. 5 to 11.) 

Umbrella when young, globose when older, hemis- 
pheric, or shallow-campanulate, "like a Chinese hat," 
(Forbes) from — th to -^th inch in diameter, trans- 
parent, colourless. The margin fringed with about 
thirty-two tentacles ; these are very slender, and exten- 
sile, occasionally reaching to four or five times the 

L 2 

386 busk's thaumantias. 

diameter of the body ; their tips adhere with force to 
other substances, and moor the animal : their bulbs 
contain a yellow undefined nucleus. A colourless 
ocellus between each tentacle-bulb and the next. 
(Fig. 7). 

Sub-umbrella moderately high, with a narrow veil. 
Ovaries small, oval, around the radiating vessels; 
each with a yellowish nucleus ; one was lengthened 
and constricted in the middle; and one was wanting. 
In others the ovaries contained globular ova with clear 
centres in various degrees of development. (See figs. 
9 and 10). 

Stomach small, quadrangular, almost colourless, 
with thickened edges not frimbriated. (Fig. 8.) Ra- 
diating and circular canals very slender. 

The tentacles vary much in number, sometimes 
eight in each quadrant, at others not more than five : 
some of the bulbs are often small, without filaments, 
and as if developing. Sometimes two ocelli are be- 
tween one pair. An ocellus occasionally has two 
spherules in it. 

This little creature, which is very active in captivity, 
has occurred about the shore in the neighbourhood of 
Ilfracombe. I have little doubt that it is the species 
which forms the subject of a valuable memoir by Mr. 
Busk, in the Transactions of the Microscopical Society. 
(Vol. iii., p. 22.) I would therefore propose to dedi- 
cate it to that gentleman, under the appellation of 
Tkaumantias Buskiana. 

The length to which the tentacles of the Medusae 
can be extended is very great. I have seen those of 
this little Thaumantias about an inch long, though 

THE fairy's cap. 387 

the bell was only one line broad; and yet the tentacle 
was even then corrugated, and seemed capable of 
almost indefinite prolongation. What is curious, too, 
is that they were stretched perpendicularly upward, 
and not pendent. 

THE fairy's cap. 

The elegance and beauty of the smaller Medusa 
have been celebrated by poets and naturalists, and 
have sometimes excited the latter to use the enthusi- 
astic phraseology of the former. Here is a tiny 
species, which I venture to think any one looking at 
it, or even at the magnified figure of it in Plate XXVI, 
will not hesitate to pronounce one of the gems of the 
sea, though I will not presume to back it against that 
lovely atom, of which Professor Forbes affirms that 
"there is not a Medusa in all the ocean which can 
match it for beautv." 

I have met with only a single specimen of the 
species, which was taken in a rock-pool near the 
Spout-holes at the base of Capstone-hill, on the 29th 
of August. The following characters distinguish it. 

Saphenia Titania. Umbrella somewhat pear- 
shaped or campanulate, the summit round, and 
crowned with a largish cylindrical cap of colourless 
membrane, sometimes falling into folds, but capable 
of enlargement by inflation. (Fig. 8). It is connect- 
ed with the sub -umbrella, which is parallel and 
almost equal with the umbrella in all its dimensions. 
From it depends a parallel-sided peduncle reaching 

about two-thirds down the bell, composed of four 

388 THE fairy's cap. 

lobes, and terminating in four lips slightly expanded, 
not fimbriated. The margin of the sub -umbrella 
bears, at the points where two of the four radiating 
vessels enter the circular canal, two tentacles with 
very large and thick bulbs ; the filamentous portions 
can be produced to twice or thrice the length of the 
bell, but are more frequently coiled up or contracted, 
or both. The other two radiating vessels have a 
small oval bulb or swelling with a yellowish nucleus at 
their termination; and between each of these and the 
bulbs of the true tentacles, there are three smaller swell- 
ings almost obsolescent, of which the middle one is a 
little more developed than the others. (Fig. 9). A 
rather wide veil borders the margin inwardly, which 
is alternately sucked in and blown out at each vigo- 
rous contraction of the umbrella. The lower half 
of the umbrella is wrinkled transversely. 

The whole animal is transparent and colourless, 
except the peduncle, which is wholly of a delicate 
lemon-yellow ; and the tentacles, whose thick bases 
are of a rich purplish crimson, gradually fading to a 
carnation tint on the filaments. The whole animal 
is very minute, being only ^^ inch in height (Fig. 7) ; 
but the richness of its hues makes it conspicu- 
ous under a lens, especially in the sun's rays, and 
when viewed with a dark background. 

Its little fairy-cap, and its beauty, suggested the 
name of the 'faery queen' for its specific appellation. 

Its motions are vigorous, shooting by long leaps 
through the water by means of its contractions, at 
each of which the floating particles are forced in a 
jet out of the bell. 


The Maritime Bristle-tail — Its Nocturnal Habits— Discovery of 
its Retreats— Its Companions — The Scarce Polynoe — Its 
Armoury of Weapons — A rocky Bay — Komantic Incident — 
Chivalrous Self-sacrifice — The Tunnels — Crewkhorne Cavern 
—The Torr Cliffs— Precipitous Path— Torr Point— Solitude— 
The Scarlet and Gold Madrepore — Scene of its Discovery — 
Description of the Species — Its Microscopical Structure — The 
Stony Skeleton— Thread- Capsules of Actinia — The Club- 
bearing Medusa — Entanglement of Air — Structure of the 
Tentacles — The Eyes. 


Lingering one evening on the ledges of grey rock 
below the promenade on Capstone Hill, I accidentally 
learned some particulars in the economy of the 
Machilis. It was at the north-west corner, where a 
broad shelving slope affords standing room, and 
where a rude seat presents accommodation for visitors, 
who resort to the comparative seclusion of the spot, 
to watch the glories of the setting sun, or the first 
flash from the light-house on the summit of distant 

Just about the time when all objects but those im- 
mediately around were becoming indistinct in the 
advancing darkness, I perceived some little moving 
specks on the white rock, and stooping down to get a 
better view, I saw that they were insects, which were 
running nimbly about in great numbers, and which 


leaped away whenever I attempted to lay hands on 
them. With some difficulty I succeeded in taking 
two or three, by slapping my hand suddenly down 
upon them, and crushing them. Having brought 
home my captures in that improvised collecting-box, 
that every entomologist finds need now and then to 
resort to, — a scrap of paper screwed up at both ends, 
— I found that they were the same little active crea- 
tures that I had met with before, Machilis maritima. 

I visited the spot the next day, but could not dis- 
cover a single individual : at the approach of night, 
however, they came out as before by hundreds. I 
suspected therefore that night was the proper season 
of activity for these insects ; and that during the day 
they would probably be found secreted in the nume- 
rous fissures, with which this slaty rock abounds. 

Accordingly I took an early opportunity of examin- 
ing the place, furnished with a hammer and chisel. 
It was as I anticipated. On my detaching a loose 
fragment of the slate, I disturbed about a score of the 
insects, varying in size, — the old parents shining in 
all the lustrous radiance of their scaly coats, and their 
hopeful family of all ages clustering round them in 
duller raiment. A large heap of ejecta showed that 
the fissure had been their regular and constant dwel- 
ling. Not that the place however was confined to 
them ; for several of the amphibious marine Woodlice 
(Lygia oceanica) were hiding there, and there were 
also some half-dozen of the tailed and horned pu- 
pa-cases of a two-winged fly, in one of which I 
found the perfect insect nearly ready for expulsion, 
but dead and dry. They were of the species named 


Eristalis tenax, that bee-like fly, that is so very 
common in every garden in the latter part of the 
summer, hovering motionless over the flowers for 
several seconds, and then shooting suddenly away to 
hover again in like manner. Its association here with 
the Machilis and the Oniscus was a rather curious 


Sept. %lth. — In turning over stones at low water 
on the outside of the harbour, I found an Annelide, 
which appears to he the rare species described by Dr. 
Johnston (Ann. N. H., Feb. 1839) by the name of 
Polynoe impar. It is not more than half-an-inch in 
length, and to the naked eye presents nothing con- 
spicuous or worthy of special notice, but submitted 
to microscopical examination it proves highly curious. 
The kidney-shaped shields with which the back is 
covered, and which are detached with slight violence 
(though not quite so readily as those of P. cirrata)^ 
are studded over with little transparent oval bodies, 
set on short footstalks; the intermediate antennae, the 
tentacles, and the cirri of the feet are similarly fringed 
with these little appendages, which resemble the glands 
of certain plants, and have a most singular appear- 
ance. If we remove the shields, we discover on each 
side of the body a row of wart-like feet, from each of 
which projects two bundles of spines of exquisite 
structure. The bundles expanding on all sides re- 
semble so many sheaves of wheat, or you may more 
appropriately fancy you behold the armoury of some 
belligerent sea-fairy, with stacks of arms enough to 

392 A worm's armoury. 

accoutre a numerous host. But if you look closely at 
the weapons themselves, they rather resemble those 
which we are accustomed to wonder at in Missionary 
museums, the arms of some ingenious hut barbarous 
people from the South Sea islands, than such as are 
used in civilized warfare. Here are long lances made 
like scythe-blades set on a staff, with a hook at the 
tip to capture the fleeing foe and bring him within 
reach of the blade. Among them are others of similar 
shape, but with the edge cut into delicate slanting 
notches, which run along the sides of the blade, like 
those on the edge of our reaping-hooks. These are 
chiefly the weapons of the lower bundle ; those of the 
upper are still more imposing. The outmost are short 
curved clubs, armed with a row of shark's teeth to 
make them more fatal; these surround a cluster of 
spears, the long heads of which are furnished with a 
double row of the same appendages, and lengthened 
scymetars, the curved edges of which are cut into 
teeth like a saw. Though you may think I have 
drawn copiously on my fancy for this description, I 
am sure if you had under your eye what is on the 
stage of my microscope at this moment, you would 
acknowledge that the resemblances are not at all 
forced or unnatural.* To add to the efi'ect, imagine 

* It was not until after I had penned the above sentence that I met 
with the following remark in Andouin et Milne Edwards' "Littoral 
de la France" (ii, 40). Speaking of the bristles of the Annelides 
generally, these learned zoologists say, — ': Leur usage nous a 6te d'au- 
tant plus facile a comprendre que nous avons retrouve dans ces petites 
armures les modeles exacts des diverses fomies que I'homme a su 
donner, avec calcul, a ses armes de guerre, pour les rendre plus re- 
doubtables et pour assurer leur coups ; il n'en possede certamement 
pas de mieux adaptees a ce but que celles dont sont pourvues certaines 


that all these weapons are forged out of the clearest 
glass instead of steel; that the larger bundles may 
contain about fifty, and the smaller half as many, 
each, that there are four bundles on every segment, 
and that the body is composed of twenty-five such 
segments; and you will have a tolerable idea of the 
garniture and armature of this little worm, that grubs 
about in the mud at low-water mark. 

The spot where I found this Annelide is invested 
with a melancholy interest, from its having been the 
scene of a romantic incident that proved fatal to one 
of the actors in it. Let me bring before your mind 
the locality. 

If at low water you descend the steep flight of steps 
from the north-east corner of Capstone Promenade, 
you will find yourself in a wilderness of rocky boulders, 
through which, partly by climbing over their slippery 
masses, partly by winding round and between them, 
you may pick youi* way eastward. After a little while 
you come to a part where the precipitous coast recedes, 
with a wide but shallow curve, to some distance from 
the water's edge. The whole area bristles with pointed 
rocks, except a narrow inlet or cove of coarse sand 
that runs up obliquely from the north-west to the foot 
of a wall of stone, which has been built up to the 
height of thirty feet, where the cliffs failed. This is 
the yard-wall of several of the houses that stand on the 
quay and face the harbour; and from a door at its 
summit, a triple zigzag flight of rude steps, the lower 
range of which is cut out of the living rock, leads to 
the beach. An iron rail at the top, almost eaten 
through with rust, tells that the beating of the sea is 


no stranger even at this height; and if you were to 
take your stand on these steps when the tide is in, 
you would look out on a wide hay of clear water, the 
margin of which would he washing your feet. On 
your left hand a projecting hluff mass of rock, jutting 
out from the harhour-head, forms the w^estern boundary, 
or, if you please, you may consider the more imposing 
Capstone itself as the boundary, and this only as a 
projection into the curve of the bay, which then you 
must draw with a wider outline. Away to your right, 
you see the verdant summit of Lantern Hill, crowned 
with an ancient building that was once a Popish mass- 
house, helping to diffuse spiritual darkness, but now 
makes some amends by exhibiting a nightly light to 
guide mariners to the harbour-mouth. In the rugged 
side of the cliff you see a cavern, in which, during a 
brief shelter from a passing shower, I made these 
notes of the locality. 

Four or five years ago the large house from which 
these steps descend was temporarily occupied by two 
ladies of rank, one of whom, among other accomplish- 
ments not very common to her sex, was distinguished 
as an expert and fearless swimmer. She was accus- 
tomed to plunge from these private steps when the 
water was high, and swim out to sea, over yonder belt 
of horrid rocks, in all weathers. On the occasion I 
speak of, a morning in autumn, she had boldly, nay 
rashly, sought her favourite amusement, though a gale 
of wind was blowing, and the foaming sea was break- 
ing in furious violence almost to the very top of the 

The fishermen and idlers on the quay were just 


going to their breakfasts, when the sister of the swim- 
mer rushed out of the house with a scream of distress. 
**A lady is drowning behind ! who will save her ?" 
was her eager demand, as she passed one young man 
after another. None replied, for the weather was 
tremendous; till a poor shoemaker offered himself. 
"I'll save her, if I can," said he ; and he followed her 
swiftly through the house and yard to the head of 
the steps. 

There indeed was the lady still bravely breasting 
the rolling waves ; she had taken her outward range, 
and was returning, but the rebound of the sea from 
the cliffs was so powerful that she could not come in 
to the steps ; her strength too was failing fast, and 
it failed all the faster because she was thoroughly 

The young cordwainer, throwing off his coat and 
shoes, and taking a rope in his hand, leaped at once 
into the waves, and being himself a skilful swimmer, 
he quickly reached the drowning lady. He managed 
to pass the noose of the cord round her, by means of 
which she was presently drawn up by other men who 
had congregated on the steps. ''Take care of the 
poor man !" was her first exclamation, even before 
her own feet had touched the firm ground. But "the 
poor man" was past their care ; he had saved her life 
chivalrously, but it was with the sacrifice of his 

As soon as he had secured the lady's hold of the 
rope, he sought the shore for himself, but scarcely 
had he swam half a dozen strokes, when the specta- 
tors on shore beheld his arms suddenly cease their 


vigorous play and hang down ; his legs too sank into 
the same pendent posture, and his head dropped upon 
his hreast with the face submerged. Thus he con- 
tinued to float for a short time, hut moved no more. 
He had been subject to occasional swooning fits, from 
a severe blow which he had received on the head some 
time before; and his brother, from whose mouth I 
received these details, conjectured that one of his at- 
tacks had suddenly come upon him, his pre-disposi- 
tion being perhaps aggravated by his having gone out 
without having broken his fast. 

The tide soon carried the body away out of sight; 
efforts w^ere made as soon as practicable to recover it 
by dragging ; and it was once hooked and brought to 
the surface, but before it could be hauled into the 
boat it sank again, and it was not till more than a 
fortnight after that it was found at Comb-Martin, 
some five miles to the eastward. 

Nothing could exceed the distress of the lady at 
the death of her courageous deliverer ; for awhile she 
appeared inconsolable, and the effect of the whole 
transaction is said to have been a permanent melan- 
choly. Her gratitude was shown in providing for the 
widow and children of her benefactor, who continue 
to this day her pensioners. 


On a coast where the sublime and the awful almost 
everywhere are characteristic, where the scenery gene- 
rally is such as the savage genius of Salvator Eosa 
would have revelled in, — there are some parts where 


these characters are more than ordinarily prominent. 
The beach stretching away from the Tunnels on either 
hand, but especially that to the westward, is a scene 
which every lover of the picturesque cannot but ad- 
mire. The Tunnels themselves, pierced through the 
solid rock, at an enormous expense of labour and 
money, to give access to the beach, are an object of 
curiosity, and the visitor, as he traverses these long 
sepulchral corridors, finds in their chilliness and dark- 
ness a not inappropriate prelude to the wild solitude 
of the shore below. 

In one place the excavation of the tunnel has 
broken into the roof of Crewkhorne cavern, and the 
visitor, as he walks across a bridge of logs, passes 
over a gloomy den, which tradition affirms, perhaps 
without much foundation, to have afforded a tempo- 
rary shelter to De Tracy, when first he sought a refuge 
after the assassination of Becket. Overwhelming in- 
deed must be the terror which would impel a man to 
hide himself in such a place as this ; for though it is 
a lofty cave, with an ample mouth, the interior is 
frightfully desolate ; the sea closes the entrance at 
every tide, and at springs must wash up almost, if not 
quite, to the very extremity. 

The Ladies' Bathing Pool, a lake partly natural 
partly artificial, and the beaches and coves where 
gentlemen enjoy the same luxury, are just before and 
around this cavern, and these spots are during the 
summer generally frequented by visitors. But I prefer 
to wander on towards the westward, beneath the pre- 
cipitous Torrs, clambering over the huge angular 
spurs that jut out here and there from the base of the 

M 2 


cliff, to enjoy the solitude and the magnificence. Far 
overhead, around the summits of the peaks, the busy 
and clamorous daws are flying, and the wailing cry of 
a gull issues now and then from some of the fissures 
with which the cliffs are rent. Perhaps the tide is in, 
and the wavelets are rippling on the shingle, or the 
green arching billows are dashing up with thundering 
roar. Perhaps the tide is out, and from the beach 
extends a broad area before the water's edge is reached, 
a wilderness of boulders and masses of rock of all 
forms and dimensions. As we proceed, the shore be- 
comes more and more rugged, the strewn masses be- 
come larger, and are piled on one another in yet 
wilder confusion, until at length further progress is 
stopped by a lofty promontory that projects into the 
sea so far that no spring- tide leaves its base uncovered. 
Yet, if the visitor have nerve for the enterprise, he 
may ascend to the top of this ridge ; for there is a 
flight of steps, very narrow, shallow, and slippery, 
cut in zigzag lines up the face of the precipice, now 
passing over a slender archway of rock, but just wide 
enough for the foot, then climbing the edge of a sort 
of steep sloping ridge or wall by long steps, with no- 
thing on either side but the thin air, and the points 
of rock far below. I have ascended and descended 
two or three times, but never without a shuddering 
coldness as I came to these parts, and an emotion of 
thankfulness when they were passed. Yet the pros- 
pect from the summit, the access into still more se- 
cluded coves and bays beyond, and the exhilaration 
always felt at a considerable elevation, make the ascent 
worth the risk. Besides that, there is in most persons 


a sort of appetite for hazard, the excitement itself", 
the pleasure of daring and of surmounting danger, 
being a sufficient remuneration. 

The promontory is Torr Point, that long narrow 
slope of green turf which I have already described, in 
a walk by which it is attained from above. The 
projection and the elevation combine to afford the 
beholder a wide-spread range of prospect from its 
height, a prospect of sublime features. 

This district of the coast, including not the Point 
only, but the bays and margining rocks on either hand, 
was one to which I chiefly delighted to resort; the 
rather because in its rugged recesses, the particular 
objects of my scientific inquiries were found in rather 
than ordinary profusion and variety. 

To sit on rocks, to muse o'er flood and fell, 

To slowly trace the forest's shady scene, 
Where things that own not man's dominion dwell. 

And mortal foot hath ne'er or rarely been ; 

To climb the trackless mountain all unseen, 
With the wild flock that never needs a fold ; 

Alone o'er steeps and foaming falls to lean ; — 
This is not solitude ; 'tis but to hold 
Converse with Nature's charms, and view her stores unrolled. 

Childe Harold ii. 25. 


Sept. \Qth. — A very distinct species of Madrepore, 
and one of great beauty, I discovered to-day. It was 
spring- tide, and the water receded lower than I have 
seen it since I have been here. I was searching 
among the extremely rugged rocks that run out from 


the Tunnels, forming walls and pinnacles of danger- 
ous abruptness, with deep, almost inaccessible cavities 
between. Into one of these, at the very verge of the 
water, I had managed to scramble down ; and found 
round a corner a sort of oblong basin about ten feet 
long, in which the water remained, a tide-pool of three 
feet depth in the middle. The whole concavity of 
the interior was so smooth that I could find no restincr 
place for my foot in order to examine it ; though the 
sides all covered with the pink lichen-like Coralline, 
and bristling with Laminarise and zoophytes, looked 
so tempting that I walked round and round, reluctant 
to leave it. At length I fairly stripped, though it 
was blowing very cold, and jumped in. I had exam- 
ined a good many things, of which the only novelty 
was the pretty narrow fronds of Fliistra chartacea in 
some abundance, and was just about to come out, 
when my eye rested on what I at once saw to be a 
Madrepore, but of an unusual colour, a most refulgent 
orange. It was soon detached by means of the ham- 
mer, as were several more, which were associated with 
it. Not suspecting, however, that it was any thing 
more than a variation in colour of a very variable 
species, I left a good many remaining, for which I 
was afterwards sorry. All were affixed to the perpen- 
dicular side of the pool, above the permanent water- 
mark; and there were some of the common Caryo- 


phyllia associated with them. 

The new species may be at once recognised by its 
brilliant colours. The whole of the body and disk, 
exclusive of the tentacles, is of a rich orange, yellower 
in young specimens, almost approaching to vivid 

Flaie JGiVI 

FN Obh' M.ftliA. 

PrinUdlryBuUrrumdel ft Ifeto tl- 



scarlet in adults, especially when contracted, for dis- 
tension not only pales the hue, hut causes the yellow 
element to he roore apparent. The tentacles, about 
fifty in number, in my largest specimens, are of a fine 
gamboge-yellow. They are not terminated bv a 
globose head, but are conical and obtusely pointed. 
When closely examined, indeed, the representative of 
the globular head may be recognised in the smooth 
rounded point, but it is not larger than the parts 
below, nor is it preceded by any constriction, nor dis- 
tinguished from the other parts by its colour. Under 
a microscope the tentacle is seen to be diaphanous 
and colourless, but studded, like those of C. Smithii, 
with transversely oblong warts, which have a tendency 
to run in oblique lines ; these warts give the colour, 
being of a fine yellow ; and the rounded extremitv of 
the tentacle is composed of a number of these warts 
aggregated into one. The tentacles are proportionally 
much larger than in C. Smithii, and fewer. 

The animal is smaller than C. Smithii, the largest 
specimens I have seen being about J inch in diameter 
in the body, and rather more than J inch when the 
tentacles are expanded. All that I have seen are 
circular in outline, and not oval, which is the most 
common form of Smithii. The plates are never visi- 
ble, in any degree of contraction, the red flesh lying 
as a thick cushion over them, even when all the ten- 
tacles are withdrawn. 

The mouth protrudes in the form of a high conical 
proboscis ; this, though of course subject to some 
variation in form, appears highly characteristic of the 
species. The orifice is small, of the common colour, 


and does not form a conspicuously crenate white 

There is no coloured star on the disk, the orange 
hue running up around the bases of tlie tentacles as 
in an Actinia. Narrow radiating ridges from every 
tentacle meet in the centre. Indeed the resemblance 
to an Actinia is far more close and striking in this 
new species than in C. Smithii. The cylindrical body 
is somewhat furrowed. 

Minute microscopical examination revealed differ- 
ences between the two species more remarkable than 
any above-noted. All the red parts are clothed with 
vibratile cilia, but the tentacles, which in C. Smithii 
we have seen to be so furnished, are here entirely 
destitute of them. The ciliary currents flow down the 
sides of the body, but uj) the conical proboscis from 
the whole circumference of the disk, passing off out- 
ward from the mouth. The whole tentacle is covered 
with short motionless hairs, and not the tip only. 

The warts on the tentacles, when subjected to high 
pressure, appear to be oval vesicles or sacs of clear 
gelatinous fluid, in which float many yellow pigment- 
granules, which are of a varying figure, generally 
more or less drop-shaped, with a sinuated outline, and 
one end drawn out. These warts appear also to be 
the chief seats of the filiferous capsules : these are not 
very numerous, oblong, and almost linear in form, 
varying from y^th to -gg^-th inch in length, and send- 
ing forth a filament about thirty times the length of the 
capsule; one that I measured reached to -^ud inch. 
Those of the convoluted ovaries agreed in all respects 
with these. 


If any additional evidence were wanting to sliow 
that this species approaches much nearer the Actiniae 
than C. Smith a does, it would he found in the stony 
skeleton. This is very difierent in appearance from 
that of the kindred species, and is manifestly rudi- 
mentary. When the soft parts have heen carefully 
removed by several days' maceration in fresh water, 
and the gelatinous matter all cleared away fi'om the 
stony plates by a slender stream of water allowed to run 
upon it from a height, a vertical view shows the following 
arrangement : — First, at the very margin there is a 
narrow circle of white calcareous plates, small and 
very irregularly anastomosing, so as to resemble in 
miniature the honev-combed limestone rock that we 
find around Torquay and elsewhere. In the centre of 
the cavity, there is another loose spongy mass of 
similar irregular plates. Eighteen perpendicular radi- 
ating plates extend between the marginal circle and 
the central mass, arranged in six threes, so as to make 
a six-raved star. The order of each trine series is as 
follows : the middle one is the thickest and shortest, 
reaching scarcely more than half-way from the cir- 
cumference to the centre. On each side of this there 
is a longer thinner plate, neither parallel nor converg- 
ing towards the centre, but diverging at a small angle, 
so that each of these lateral plates meets the lateral 
plate of the next trine series, at a point consider- 
ably short of the centre, whence a plate sometimes 
goes to the central mass. The arrangement will be 
better understood by a reference to Plate XXVI, fig. 
6, which represents a quadrant of the circle, much 


The plates are all very rough, with irregular pro- 
jections and erosions. They do not rise in an arched 
outline above the level of the margin, hut the whole 
surface is concave. I have described and delineated 
what appears to be the normal arrangement, though 
this in fact is adhered to in different degrees of pre- 

The form of the calcareous skeleton identifies this 
interesting addition to the British Corals with the 
genus Balano])hyllia of Mr. Searles Wood ; a fossil 
species of which has been found in the Crag. The 
royal colours in which the present species is arranged 
— scarlet and gold — suggest the specific name of reyia. 
The distinctive characters of the skeleton may be thus 
summed up. 

Balanophyllia regia. — Corallum cylindrical or sub- 
conic, fixed by a rather broad base. Four cycles of 
septa. Cup circular, much depressed. Plates not 
rising above the border; much crenulated, and rough- 
ened with grains. Margin thin, distinct. Columella 
strongly developed, spongy. Epitheca investing, to 
the edge of the cup ; beneath which extend low ridges, 
close-set, rough, and geniculate. 

I afterwards found the same species in considerable 
number, especially during the very low springs of the 
October new moon, among the rocks ofi" the Tunnels, 
all in the vicinity of the spot where I found the first. 
They were always in the same circumstances, crowded 
into colonies ; one little cavity, just large enough to 
turn in, containing perhaps a hundred, speckling the 
walls with their little scarlet disks, near extreme low 
water. Not one that I took presented the least varia- 


tion from the characters I had jotted down already; 
but one specimen had adhering to its base two very 
young ones, one about a line in diameter, the other 
not more than one-third of a line. Examination with 
a lens revealed no difference either in form or colour 
betw^een these and the adult ; the condition of their 
skeleton is unknown, as I did not choose to destroy 
the infant specimens. 

Plate XXVI, fig. 1 represents the Scarlet and Gold 
Madrepore expanded ; magnified. 

Fig. 2. The same of the natural size, contracted. 

3. A tentacle, greatly magnified. 

4. A tentacle of Caryophyllia Smithii, for 


5. Filiferous capsules. 


I have been dissecting a fine specimen of Actinia 
crassicornis. The interspaces of the abdominal septa 
I found filled with the ovigerous tubes, so-called. 
When examined closely these are seen to consist of a 
narrow ribbon, about half a line in width, convoluted 
and puckered in a very irregular manner, but having 
a tendency to form spiral turns, of a whorl, or a wdiorl 
and a half, each ; the ribbon itself being nearly flat, 
and one of its edges being the axis of the spire. The 
ribbon consists of two parts ; a yellowish-brown mass 
occupies the portion next the axis, for about three - 
fourths of the breadth ; the remaining fourth is an 
exterior border of pellucid substance. I placed some 
of the whorls under the microscope, and observed the 


external edge beset with a fringe of delicate vibratile 
cilia, by whose constant action not only were the 
floating atoms in the water hurled in a rapid and 
regular current along the edge, but the spires of 
ribbon themselves were made to swim through the 
water, principally with a slow gyratory motion, suffi- 
ciently perceptible even to the naked eye. 

On subjecting some of the whorls to the compresso- 
rium, an immense number of yellowish granules were 
discharged from the brown part, while the pellucid 
border displayed the filiferous capsules in considerable 
number, pointing towards its outer edge. They are 
club-shaped, or almost fusiform, with one end the 
larger, varying from -^ to -^ th inch in length ; the 
contained thread occupies a slender linear cavity* 
extending about two-thirds through the length, and is 
thence continued as a line of almost invisible tenuity. 
(See Plate XXVIII., fig. 17.) When the thread is 
forced out by pressure, it sometimes extends to ~^o^ 
even -^ of an inch. The basal portion of the thread, 
for a length about equal to that of the capsule, is zig- 
zagged, and each angle of the zigzag is furnished 
with a short bristle, projecting in the direction of the 
joint from which it springs. There are about four or 
six angles, the first being removed a little from the 
tip of the capsule. (See fig. 19). 

The capsules of the tentacles are much smaller, 
being from ^ to jg^th inch in length, and more pro- 
perly linear than any I have yet seen. (Fig. 18). I 
could not force the ejection of the thread. 

In the ribbed coriaceous skin that surrounds the 
mouth, the capsules are the most developed of all, 


both in size and numbers. They are pretty uniformly 
about -^ inch in length, with the linear cavity reach- 
ing more than fths of the total length. (Fig. 20.) 
Multitudes are scattered loosely in the mucus that is 
copiously discharged from the surface, and many 
appear to be irregularly distributed in the coriaceous 
tissues ; but others are crowded into groups, whence 
the threads are projected in dense brushes, to the length 
of about a line, or thirty-three times that of the 
capsule. I observed in most of the evolutions, of 
which I witnessed a great many, that the filament was 
not projected with the rapid suddenness observed in 
many cases, but with comparative slowness, and by 
degrees ; the tip being gradually lengthened, most 
commonly in a long spiral. In every instance that I 
could note the fact, the bearded part at the bottom 
was first projected, and w^as perfected before the 
length of the thread proceeded beyond that extent — a 
convincing proof that the process is one of evolution, 
and not of simple propulsion. 


Thaumantias ? Coi-yrietes. (Plate XXT.) — Um- 
brella about Jth inch in height; bell-shaped; trans- 
parent; colourless. (Fig. 1, magnified; 2, nat. size). 

Sub-umbrella, rather more than two-thirds as high 
as the umbrella, campanulate or sub-conical ; margined 
with a narrow scolloped veil. Ovaries elliptical, 
about the outer half of the four radiating vessels, ir- 
regularly ventricose, reaching to the marginal canal. 
Their substance, in one that I examined, w^as com- 


posed of delicate polygonal cells (fig. 7), without any 
developed ova. 

Tentacles twenty-four, arranged in eight bundles of 
three each, at the points of junction of the four radi- 
ating vessels, and midw^ay between them. One in 
each group is minute and rudimentary (fig. 4) ; the 
others are peculiar in form ; they arise from conical 
bulbs set in twins close together, with a nucleus of 
dark red pigment in each ; they are at first slender, 
but swell towards their tennination into a thick ovate 
or fusiform club, surrounded by from sixteen to forty 
thickened rings, which are close or remote according 
to the degree of contraction of the tentacle. They 
are generally carried divergent, wdth a sigmoid 

The marginal canal carries about the same number 
of (visual or) auditory capsules as of tentacles ; they 
are perfectly globular, hyaline, each with a single 
spherule. They are arranged three between two 
groups of tentacles, but not quite symmetrically. 
(Figs. 3 to 5 represent a group of tentacles, with their 
ocellated bulbs, and capsules.) 

Peduncle small, ovate, with a neck, and slightly en- 
larged extremity ; the outline seen vertically is qua- 
drangular : it terminates in a thickened lip, pucker- 
ed and obscurely four-fold. The whole is pellucid 
flesh-coloured, viewed by transmitted light; but in 
the sun's rays the basal part is of a lively yellow-green 
and the lips bright rose-pink. (Fig. 6.) It does not 
seem very mobile or extensile. 

I have called this curious species Corynetes, from 
the resemblance of its tentacles to loaded clubs or 

^i^ /_! 


", -inters' hy ll .,Ul-,j,nJri S' VlltfiP ' 




war-maces, in allusion to that hero of the Iliad who 
was so named, — 

" For that he combated and burst his way' 
Thi'ough the firm phalanx, armed with neither bow 
Nor quiv'ring spear, but with an iron mace." 

II. vii. 143. 

Its peculiarities may perhaps warrant its separation 
from T/iai//?ia?ftias,esi^ecm\\j the foim of the peduncle, 
and the gathering of its tentacles into groups, which 
reminds us of the genus Lizzia. 

I took the first specimen on the 6th of September, by 
dipping at the outside of Warphouse Point, that forms 
the western boundaiy of the harbour of Ilfracombe. 
Its motions were lively in captivity. The thick ten- 
tacles are probably adhesive, for I had repeatedly to 
clear them of extraneous matter, which they dragged 
about with them. It occasionally rested on the bottom 
of the vessel, back downward, with the tentacles 
lengthened to thrice the diameter of the bell, radiating 
in all directions, and lying on the bottom, motionless 
except that the terminal part of every one was con- 
tinually vibrated in little jerks. It had thus a pecu- 
liar and curious appearance. 

Sejjt. Ihth. — I dipped three more at the Tunnel 
Rocks, one a little larger than the above, but none 
presenting any difference of character from it. The 
subsidiary tentacle in each group of three was less 
disproportionately small in these specimens. 

The smaller Medusee, when dipped and deposited in 
the collecting jar, are apt to be more or less covered 
with minute air-bubbles, adhering to the surface of the 

N 2 


umbrella, to the interior, to the margin, to the ten- 
tacles ; in short every part is sometimes studded with 
these little sparkling globules. This is especially the 
case with those dipped, as the specimens just named 
were, among the rocks, where the sea breaks and boils; 
and I suppose the air, which the waves take under in 
breaking, is entangled in the viscidity of their gelatin- 
ous coats. The effect is not only to hinder the exa- 
mination of the animals, but will soon be fatal to them, 
for the air-globules act like so many floats, keeping 
the Medusa at the surface, and preventing its free 

The best way that I know of to get rid of these 
pretty but annoying spangles, is to push the Meduste 
forcibly under water with a bit of stick or a glass rod, 
striking them gently when deep under the surface. 
Every blow dislodges some of the globules, which 
rise and disperse ; by repeating this process you may 
rid the animal of its floats and enable it to swim at 
ease again. I do not find that the pushing about 
hurts them ; though it frightens them a little, and 
causes them to pump with redoubled energy. 

Oct. Qth. — I obtained several more specimens by 
dipping at Warphouse Point on a sunny afternoon in 
a heavy gale and sea, when nothing else occurred ex- 
cept a solitary Turris neglecta. The species appears, 
more than other small Medusae, to be tolerant of 
rough weather. 

On examining the tentacles with a high power, I 
find that the thickened rings are well-defined annular 
swellings of the gelatinous substance, in which are 
imbedded the filiferous capsules, to the number of 



fifty or more in each ring, tlie interspaces being free 
from them. (Fig. 8.) The capsules are notregularly 
arranged. They are minute egg-shaped bodies, with 
a cavity of similar form towards the larger end, which 
I presume to contain the projectile thread. (Fig. 9.) 
But owing to the minuteness of the capsules, their 
longer diameter not exceeding j^th of an inch, the 
plates of the compressorium would not act upon them 
so as to effect the propulsion of the filament in a 
single instance that I could detect, even with many 

The secondary or small tentacles have not in general 
the capsules disposed in regular rings, but only a few 
scattered throughout, with the exceptiou of their tips 
which are composed of a globose dense assemblage of 
these organs. A few are scattered through the sub- 
stance of the peduncular stomach. 

The visual organs (fig. 5) are from -^to -§^th inch 
in diameter. They appear to be composed of gelatin- 
ous matter, with a central oval cavity about -^th 
inch in diameter, in which at one end is a globular, 
highly refractile, crystalline lens, about j^^th inch in 
diameter. On graduated pressure being applied, the 
vesicle is seen first to flatten, then the cavity ; but 
when the plates of the compressorium act on the lens, 
it breaks into pieces like a crystal, and usually with 
a fracture that radiates from its centre. The frag- 
ments do not differ in appearance from the entire 


"Various Effects of Light on Scenery— Ode to Light— The Sabella 
— Its Tube — Its Crown of Plumes — Fatal Attack — Discovery 
of more Specimens — Laborious Mode of Procuring them — 
The Young — Reproduction of the Crown — The Corynactis — 
A low Spring-tide — The Tunnel Hocks — Discovery of the 
Species — Its Form, Structure, and Colours — Manner of taking 
Pood — ^Thread- Capsules — Their elaborate Structure — Propul- 
sion of the Thread — Identification of the Species — The Pur- 
ple-spotted Anemone — Its Locality and Manners — Its Form 
and Colours — Thread- Capsules — Nature of these Organs — 
Systematic List of Zoophytes — Conclusion. 


How much of the charm of scenery depends upon 
an element, which, if we have never accustomed 
ourselves to analyse our sensations and the causes of 
them, we may he apt to overlook, or at least not 
consciously recognise ! I mean the diversity that is 
produced hy the different degrees and comhinations 
of hght and shadow. How different the same scene 
looks at different times of the day, and in different 
states of the weather ! The edge of a grove in full 
foliage, when looked at on a cloudy day, is not at all 
the same thing as when the sun-light falls slantingly 
on it, bringing out masses of rich bright green, and 
throwing intervals into hlack shade. There is the 


broad side of Capstone Hill visible from my window ; 
all tbrough the day, indeed, it is a fine object, though 
only a mass of brown rock with a grassy top ; but 
sometimes, just as the sun is setting, his red rays 
falling full upon the precipitous side, illuminate it 
brilliantly, and communicate to its ample surface a 
rich rosy hue most beautiful to behold ; but as trans- 
ient as charming; for we have scarcely uttered an 
involuntary ejaculation of surprise, before the old 
dusky appearance is put on again. 

The sea, again; — how many of its changing aspects 
depend on the lights that fall on it ! On a bright 
sunny day, its sparkling, glittering, ripples break up 
the soft blue surface with tiny rays, like a plain of 
sapphire inlaid with diamonds. Fleecy clouds appear 
in the sky, and communicate a new feature to the sea 
below ; for their dark shadows flit along and chase 
each other over the surface, in patches of grey or 
green of various shapes and sizes. 

Look upon it in a calm summer's evening. How 
gloriously it reflects, as from a mirror, the flood of 
soft lustre in the western sky, and the sun itself 
sinking down that glowing path, hke a shield of 
burnished gold ! Watch till the fiery King has sunk 
to rest, and the burning glow begins to soften and to 
fade. How vividly do we see repeated below — 

The canopy of eve 
That overhung the scene with gorgeous clouds. 
Decaying into gloom more beautiful 
Than the sun's golden liveries which they lost. 


Take it in another condition. The sky is overcast 


with clouds, with breaks here and there in the grey 
smoky canopy. Out seaward the horizon is of a dark 
purplish-blue tint, then indigo, blending into a blue- 
green, and this into a dull leaden hue. But there is 
a wide patch just beneath the place of the sun, where 
the rays fall through an opening in the clouds on the 
sea, in form like an inverted fan ; the water just there 
is a flood of light, in which the ripples sparkle and 
quiver as if thousands of silvery fishes were every 
moment leaping up. All round, the surface presents 
only the dull lead-colour, rendered more obscure by 
the contrast of this spot of lustre. Ships and smaller 
craft are scattered about the distance; one and another 
is suddenly illuminated by one of the streams of light 
falling on the spot where each happens to be; her 
sails, which before were scarcely distinguishable from 
the grey sea, in a moment become beautifully white and 
conspicuous. Just as a Christian, on whom the light 
of God's countenance rests, is bright and happy, while 
his fellows walking in comparative darkness, remain 
dull and covered with clouds. 

These and other examples of the potent influence 
of light have often recalled to my mind a poem which 
was given me many years ago in Newfoundland. It 
was from the pen of a young clergyman, a native of 
the island, the Kev. Joseph Clinch. I possess it in 
manuscript; whether it has ever been published I 
know not, but in my judgment the beauty of the 
thoughts and the elegance of the versification are 
worthy of perpetuity. If the gifted author still 
survives, he will, I trust, pardon me for enriching my 
pages with some of the stanzas. 

LIGHT. 415 


Jot of the Universe sublime ! 

Thy beams have lit the waves of time. 

E'er since the Almighty's hand 
With worlds unnumber'd spangled space. 
And urged them on their rapid race, 

A bright and glorious band. 
Yet 'twas not with the splendid sun. 
That thy bright being was begun ; 

For ever hath thy ray 
Of glory canopied the Throne 
Of the Eternal Three in One 

In one unceasing day. 

'Twas not when Night in fear beheld 
A brilliant universe impell'd 

Through all her wide domain, 
And fled in panic from her post, 
Before that grand and glittering host, 

That wide and mighty train ; 
It was not then thy being bright 
First flash 'd to view, favouring Light ! 

Not then commenc'd thy race ; 
For God is light, and Heaven would be 
No Heaven, fair beam, 4epriv'd of thee, 

No envied resting place. 

When Night's dark curtains were unfurl'd. 
And robe-like wi'app'd the new-born world. 

And, on the wrathful deep. 
Slept in a dark and grim repose, 
Until that mighty voice arose 

Which bade thee burst their sleep ; — 
How grand, how glorious, was the sight. 
When thou awok'st, triumphant Light, 

Upon that curtain 'd sea, — 
Pour'd forth the ocean of thy rays. 
And wrapp'd all Nature in the blaze 

Of thy divinity ! 

And now, although the stream of years 
So long hath roll'd, thy beam appears 
As fair, as pure, as bright, 

416 LIGHT. 

As when the joyous Ocean gave. 

To meet thy smile, his first-born wave 

With foaming mantle white : 
Yes ! now thou art as fair to view — 
"When o'er the morning billows blue 

By zephyr gently toss'd, 
Or o'er the mountain's misty side 
Thou pour'st the splendour of thy tide — 

Fair Light ! as then thou wast. 

Most glorious Light ! how glad thy ray 
To him who treads a trackless way 

Through forests wild and high : 
When Night displays no planet's gleam 
To cheer him with its dubious beam, 

And bless his anxious eye ! 
Or when, upon the midnight wave, 
(His vessel's and his comrades' grave,) 

The sailor braves the sea, 
And, grasping some precarious hold, 
Prays, with his wild eye heavenward roll'd. 

For safety and for thee. 

And glorious art thou, when thy rays 
Play on the prisoner's startled gaze. 

Dejected, sunk, and wan ; 
When, from the dimgeon and the chain. 
Freedom to thee and life again 

Restores the wretched man ; 
Or when upon the couch of woe 
Sickness, with many a bitter throe 

And dim and wakeful eye. 
Counts the long night, and raptur'd sees 
Thy first ray touch the dewy trees. 

And gild the casement high. 


Oct. i2th. — Peeping into a little crevice of an over- 
hanging ridge at Hele, within the fissure that leads 


up to the curious Perforated Kock, I saw a tube pro- 
jecting, just beneath the surface of the water, about 
H inch long. I could just get my arm into the 
crevice, and feel the tube with my fingers ; it resembled 
both in consistency and appearance half-boiled maca- 
roni. I thought it was a sponge, and tried to pull it 
off; unfortunately I could get only one hand in, and 
so could not work with the hammer and chisel. But 
by loosening some of the laminse of the shale with my 
fingers, I managed to expose the tube for several 
inches lower down, and at length detached it by pull- 
ing. The lower part was membranous, of a clear 
reddish-brown colour, and angular. Again looking 
into the obscurity of the hole, for I could only look 
and work by turns, I saw in the now turbid water 
what seemed a noble white Actinia, wdth expanded 
tentacles. I now felt again with my fingers, and 
presently pulled away a couple of inches more of the 
membranous part of the tube ; still it did not occur 
to me to connect it with the actinia-looking creature, 
which I could still dimly see in the muddy water. 

By feeling carefully 1 got hold of the animal, and 
having worked my fingers down as close to its point 
of attachment as possible, I pulled it away, and put 
my prize into the glass-jar of clear water. what a 
magnificent creature ! I thought, as I gazed dehghted 
upon it, that it excelled in beauty any of the marine 
animals I had yet found. It proved to be a Sahellu, 
and, as I believe, the 8. vesiculosa of Montagu. 

It was a large stout w^orm, beset along each side 
with little bundles of satiny bristles, closely packed in 
pencils, of a golden colour. There was no proper 


head, but the anterior extremity was furnished with 
two ample fans of many plumes, each fan having 
one side curled spirally inward, and the pair forming 
an exquisite funnel-shaped appendage, inclosing two 
beautiful volutes of the same. The expansion of this 
elegant organ was fully an inch and a half, and the 
length of the plumes but little less. The latter were 
bearded with short vanes of extreme tenuity, and 
reminded me of those feathers of the bird of Paradise, 
that are worn in ladies' head dress. Their colour was 
white and maronne-brown, in broad alternate bands. 

This feeble description can afford scarcely any idea 
of the elegance of this plumous crown, which seemed 
as if it would have well become the head of some 
noble cacique, or the lord of one of those isles in the 
distant east which are the depositories of earth's most 
precious things. Well, I put my captive into my jar, 
and was gratified to see the crown expanded, and grace- 
fully waving ; notwithstanding that in dislodging the 
animal I had unfortunately torn off the hinder ex- 
tremity of the body. This, however, I hoped, might be 
healed, and reproduced. 

But a disappointment was in store. Presently 
afterward, I came across a pool in which several 
specimens of Afithea cereus were stretching their 
snaky tentacles like so many Medusas' heads. Wish- 
ing to show the species to a friend, I selected one, and 
unthinkingly dropped it into the jar which held my 
Sahella. The long tenacious tentacles could hard- 
ly fail to come into contact with its beautiful plumes, 
and I soon saw with vexation that such was the case ; 
and that several of these organs were entangled around 


the crown and body of the worm. I did not well 
know what to do, but I thought the best thing was to 
take both out, and endeavour to pull away the tenta- 
cles of the A?ithea one by one. While thus engaged, 
to my infinite chagrin, the lovely coronet suddenly 
came ofi" all in a piece from the body, though pulled 
with the least imaginable force. To use a phrase of 
the ladies, " I could almost have sat down and cried." 
I did no such thing, however, but put body and head- 
dress into another bottle, only, alas ! to note the sad 
contrast between its now shrunken form, and that 
which it had assumed when the life was pervading it, 
spreading its graceful curves, opening and closing the 
spires, and gently waving every delicate filament. 

It has often occurred to me, — so often that I have 
wondered at the coincidence, — that when I have found 
any thing very rare or curious that I have long vainly 
desired to see, I meet with others directly afterwards, 
though in circumstances which have no connexion 
with the first. It was so with respect to this Sabella. 
The very next day a man who keeps a little shop for 
the sale of shells, corals, and other specimens of 
natural history, took me to the cove at the back of the 
quay, to shew me " a sort of barnacles" that he had 
found there. What should these be but a colony of 
this very Sahella ? When we arrived at the place, 
there, in a little hollow about as large as a washing- 
basin, were the tubes of some eight or nine clustered 
together, and protruding, apparently, from the edges 
of the laminae of the shale, for there was no visible 

We emptied the little basin with our hands, and 


set to work with hammer and chisel to cut out the 
rock around them. The hollow was breast-high in 
the side of a great mass of rock, so that it was easy 
to work at it; the shale too was fortunately very soft 
and friable. In about an hour we had cut away the 
surrounding parts to the depth of five or six inches, 
when the laminoe of the shale came away piecemeal, 
with the tubes adhering by the side to them. The 
membranous matter, of which the tubes are formed, 
and which is, I have no doubt, an exudation from the 
skin of the animal, was spread about upon the surface 
of the laminae on each side of the adherent tube. 
What was particularly interesting was that some of the 
tubes had a family of young ones attached to them. 
These were of different ages, and their little slender 
tubes were creeping in irregular directions along the 
parent tube, from the tliickness of a hog's bristle to 
that of a goose-quill. The young tubes are not 
straight, but bent at various angles, adherent to the 
parent for the greatest part of their length, but free 
at the anterior extremity, where a tuft of plumes pro- 
trudes. The feathery crown does not differ from that 
in the adult essentially, but consists of fewer plumes 
in the ratio of age, and these are pure white to their 
base. The youngest that I can find, inhabiting a 
tube about as thick as a bristle, and half-an-inch long 
has a simple brush of five or six filaments, in the 
form of a concave fan, the middle plumes being the 
longest. Another, with a tube about as thick as a 
stout pin, has thirteen, and one, as thick as a wheat- 
straw, seventeen plumes, arranged in each case in a 
simple funnel-like circle. 


At the time of preparing this note for the press, the 
Sabellce have been in captivity about four months, 
more than three of which have been spent in Lon- 
don. Some have died, but the others are still 
apparently in good health. No increase has taken 
place in the young ones, in the number of filaments 
in their coronets, nor, so far as I can perceive, in the 
dimensions of their tubes. The species is probably 
slow of growth and long-lived. The man who shewed 
me the group in the rock, had himself known them to 
be there for several years past, and they were as large 
when he first discovered them as at last. 

An interesting circumstance, however, has occurred 
illustrative of the faculty which the creature has of 
reproducing its organs. When the specimens were 
transferred to London, I found that the confinement 
in close jars had been well-nigh fatal to several. Two 
were disposed to desert their tubes, but I pushed them 
back by gentle force, and these presently recovered, 
though their fans were very flaccid at first. Those of 
two other tubes, which were attached, side by side, to 
the same fragment of rock, did not protrude the fans 
at all, and though I watched day by day, it was in 
vain, for these beautiful organs appeared no more, 
and I concluded that the animals had died. 

I did not, however, remove the tubes from the vase 
of water, but allowed them to lie week after week upon 
the bottom ; remarking all the time, with curiosity, 
yet without suspicion of the actual state of the case, 
that neither the tubes, nor, as far as I could see, the 
contents, showed any tendency to decomposition, nor 
did the water become offensive. 

o 2 


At length, on the 4th of January, about two 
months after the disappearance of the animals, I was 
surprised to see issuing from each tube, a new fan- 
disk, the filaments very delicate, of a translucent 
white, and about a quarter of an inch long, curled at 
their tips. Each formed a nearly flat disk, about as 
large as a sixpence, divided into two semi-circles, but 
without any appearance of the spiral volutes. There 
were about twenty-two filaments in each moiety : and 
the bases of all formed a ring apparently as large as 
the old neck, but this part I could not see distinctly. 
The disks of the two animals agreed precisely in ap- 
pearance with each other. 

It is manifest that each of the tenants of these 
tubes, — full-grown animals, — has undergone first the 
loss, and then the reproduction of the tentacular disk. 
Perhaps the accident which befel the first specimen 
that fell under my notice, may be one to which the 
species is not unexposed naturally ; and hence it is a 
merciful provision that an organ so easily lost, yet so 
essential, should be replaceable. Dr. Williams, of 
Swansea, in his able ^Eeport on the British Anne- 
lida' (1852), does not notice this power in Sabella^ 
and seems (p. 247) to doubt its existence in the whole 


The spring tides of the new moon in the middle of 
October this year, were lower than I had ever seen 
at Ilfracombe, a circumstance the more fortunate for 
me that it was the last opportunity I had of exam- 


iniag the shores. Large tracts of the rocks were 
exposed every day for a week, which I had never he- 
fore been able to approach, and my searchings were 
rewarded with several interesting novelties. Among 
these was the charming little Corynactis Allmanni. 
(Plate VIII.) 

If the visitor, standing at the mouth of either of 
the Tunnels, or at the margin of the Ladies' Bathing 
Pool, look out seaward, he will see that the rocks, 
which are low for some distance from the beach, rise 
at length into enormous angular masses, the strata of 
which project towards the sky in a diagonal direction 
from the shore. One of these masses lying far 
away to the right, is the Lion Rock, so conspicuous 
and remarkable an object in the view from Wilders- 
mouth, and from the field-path leading to Hele, when 
the tide is pretty well in. The next is separated from 
this by a wide space of clear water ; and is seen when 
you come close to it to be not a single solid rock, but 
rather a collection of masses, divided by chasms and 
fissures, with deep but narrow inlets running between 
them, strewn with boulders and gravel. It was down 
at the water's edge in one of these inlets, as I was in- 
tently examining the beetling sides of the lofty rock, 
that I looked into a shallow cavity into which the tide 
was washing. The rock is here more solid than usual, 
and the surface, bathed by the sea, has none of that 
ragged friable appearance that so characterises its ex- 
posed parts. The cavities and projections, though of 
various irregular forms, are nearly as smooth as if 
wrought by the sculptor's chisel. They are almost 
quite free from sea-weeds, at least where the outline is 


near the j^erpenclicular ; yet they are not naked, being 
encrusted with Flusti'ce, Cellularim, Lepralice, Crisice, 
Sertularia, and Sponges ; and the lower parts are 
studded with the elegant Madrepore, Caryophyllia 

The over-arching roof of the hollow in question, — 
it cannot he called a cave, — w^as studded over with 
scores of what seemed a new Actinia, for as the tide 
had left them dry, they were all in a contracted state, 
and I had no opportunity of seeing the beautiful 
clubbed form of their tentacles that distinguishes the 
genus Corijnactis. They were, however, much more 
tender and soft than the Actiniae, so that, though I 
had no difficulty in detaching them with the point of 
my pocket-knife, their substance yielded so much that 
I feared I was destroying them ; especially as under 
the irritation they gave out an enormous quantity of 
thick, tenacious w^iite mucus, scarcely less consistent 
than their own substance. 

They were of various colours, but all beautiful. I 
will describe them, however, not as I imperfectly saw 
them then, hanging from their native roof-tree, but as 
I see them now before me, some five and twenty of 
the finest that I selected for preservation, now comfort- 
ably established in a saucer of sea-water. 

First as to form. When contracted they are com- 
monly little flattish warts or sub-conical buttons, 
much like Actiniae ; but sometimes one will greatly 
elongate its figure, swelling at the extremity, somewhat 
like a long fig. (Fig. 8.) Sometimes they are very 
much depressed, the surface corrugated, and the out- 
line irregularly lobed. (Fig. 9.) 


When expanded, the margin of the disk forms a 
distinct crenated rim, outside the tentacles, always 
brilliantly coloured. This rim is everted in the most 
complete expansion, the tentacles spreading over it, 
and the disk dilated beyond the diameter of the body. 
But a more common state is that of a short cylinder, 
the rim upright, and the tentacles crowded in nearly 
perpendicular rows, and scarcely projecting over the 
edge. (Fig. 10.) The tentacles have exactly the 
same form and structure as in Carijophyllia SmitJdij 
consisting of a rather short thick body tapering from 
the base upward, and studded with transversely-oblong 
warts, and of a large globular head, diverse in colour 
and surface from the body, and covered wdth a dense 
coat of short down. Thev are arrano-ed in tw^o com- 
plete marginal rows, and two incomplete and irregular 
discal rows. T counted them in one specimen, and 
found the exterior rows to contain twenty-four each, 
and the interior about eighteen each ; making the 
total number eiofhtv-four. In another there were 
more than one hundred, and then there were four 
compact rows, besides smaller scattered ones on the 
disk, so that I feel sure the number and arrangement 
of these organs form but insufficient specific characters, 
especially since we know that in the Actiniae they 
increase with the age of the animal. 

The oral disk is usually concave, the mouth, how- 
ever, rising into an oblong cone. The disk is marked 
as usual with radiating lines. The mouth forms two 
projecting lips, which are strongly crenate, like the 
edges of a cowry-shell. The whole appearance of the 
disk, tentacles, lips, and all, is almost exactly a 


counterpart of these parts in Caryophyllia SmitJiii, 
so that we can scarcely avoid considering it a nearer 
approach than the Actiniae to this Madrepore. 

In taking food, such as a morsel of meat presented 
to it, the Corynactis does not protrude the lips to 
embrace it, nor close the tentacles over it, like the 
Actinise in general ; but dilates the oral orifice slowly 
and uniformly until the lips form a circle strongly 
crenated, of great width, nearly as wide indeed, as 
the entire disk, within which the stomach, like a broad 
shallow saucer, is seen, with the coils of ovarian (?) 
filaments lying all over its bottom and sides. Into 
this gaping cavity the morsel is drawn, and then the 
lips gradually contract and embrace it, finally protrud- 
ing in a pouting cone. 

Now for colours. The most common hue is a pale 
and very delicate rose or flesh-colour, with the rim a 
brilliant coral- scarlet, or an equally brilliant emerald- 
green ; in the latter case, the body is sliglitly tinged 
with lilac. The delicate tint of the body is lost 
towards the base, which is of a whitish-brown. The 
disk is of the same colour as the body. When the 
rim is scarlet, the tentacles are pure white ; or rather 
the body is pellucid with white warts, and the globose 
head is also white. When the rim is green, the ten- 
tacle-warts are umber-brown, and the centre of the 
head is of the same hue. The size of these varieties 
does not exceed, so far as I have seen, a quarter of 
an inch in diameter at the base, about one-sixth across 
the disk, and about the same in height. 

A larger variety, half-an-inch in width of base and 
in height, is of a rich sienna-brown, the rim and the 


lips brownish orange, the tentacle bodies deep iimber- 
brown, and the globose heads pure white. This has 
a very fine appearance. 

The filiferous capsules of this little Corynactis (See 
Plate XXVIII. figs. 1 to 13) are the largest that I 
have yet seen, being as long as those of Caryophyllia 
Smithii, (-^th inch) and twice their diameter. They 
are ovate or elliptical, compressed in one aspect (fig. 
13), with a little nipple at the anterior end. (Figs, 1, 
12, 13). Within the cavity and almost filling it, the 
thread is distinctly seen, coiled round and round in a 
spiral more or less regular in different individuals. 
There is no lozenge-shaped body at the anterior end, 
and in correspondence with this lack, we find the 
thread when projected to be destitute of a brush of 
hairs, and to be of uniform structure throughout its 
length. The length of the thread is very great ; one 
that I measured reached to about |-th inch, or about 
thirty-seven times that of the capsule. Its thickness 
also is distinctly measurable, and I found it ^^^ th of 
an inch, equal throughout. It is marked for its entire 
length with diagonal lines, alternating at right angles 
to each other, which I presume to indicate a similar 
structure of imbricate plates to that observed in Cary- 
ojjhyllia, but set more Avidely apart. (See fig. 2). By 
delicate manipulation a series of transverse or angular 
striae were visible throughout the thread, rather close 
together, about four or five to each alternation of the 
diagonal imbrications. 

Such then is the structure of the larger capsules 
and their filaments. These are very numerous, both 
in the ovarian bands and in the tentacles. There was 


much diversity in the manner of the projection of the 
thread. In many cases, especially in such capsules 
as were found loose in the enveloping mucus, (lihe- 
rated probably in the act of detaching the fragment 
for examination.) the thread was found alreadv shot 
to its utmost, when presented to the microscope, 
before pressure was applied with the compressorium. 
Many under pressure projected it in a moment, and I 
invariably found that the imbricate structure could 
be made out only in such threads as were thus per- 
fectly and suddenly expelled. 

But it was quite as common for the thread to shoot 
out partially, and by starts, a coil or two at a time 
emerging ; and in this case, the projected part appear- 
ed thin and shrivelled, with no defined marks, nor 
even a distinct diameter. I think the cause of this 
imperfect transmission was always some obstruction 
lying in the way of the tip of the thread, sometimes 
overcome, but often presenting an insuperable barrier, 
when the capsule would remain half empty, the an- 
terior portion of the coil having disappeared, but the 
posterior part remaining unchanged. 

A curious proof of the projectile force employed 
was by accident presented to me. The tip of a thread 
in the act of emission came into contact with a cap- 
sule already emptied. It was stayed for an instant ; 
but the crystalline wall of the capsule was driven 
inward in an indentation, and presently it yielded, 
and the thread forced its way in, shooting all round 
the interior of the oval cavity. 

These capsules, and even their projected threads, 
are distinctly visible with a common triple pocket-lens. 


But besides these, there are other smaller capsules 
differing in their structure. They have the common 
oblong form of those of the Actinice, but attenuated at 
one end, which is sometimes drawn out to a needle 
like point, (fig. 8). Sometimes at the small (4) but 
more commonly at the large end (7, 9, 11), there is a 
cylindrical clear body, about one-third of the length 
of the capsule, besides the evanescent spiral coils 
which occupy the remainder of the cavity. 

The thread of these is furnished with a brush of 
divergent bristles at its base, extending up a space 
about equal to the length of the capsule (5) ; so that 
I have no doubt of the connection of this elongated 
body with the brush. These capsules vary much in 
form (figs. 7 to 11), and also in size ; the largest being 
about -g^ inch, the smallest -^ inch in length. Of these 
latter, however, I could not discover the thread, 
either coiled or evolved. 

The specimens readily expanded their tentacles in 
captivity, and w^ere not at all sensitive or impatient of 
irritation. They dsd not, however, make any attempt 
to affix themselves by their adhering bases, but 
remained loose at the bottom of the vessel. 

I feel no doubt that they are identical with the 
Corijnactis Allmcuun of Mr. Thompson, described 
and figured in Dr. Johnston's Brit. Zooph. (2nd 
Edit.) p. 474. His single specimen differed in some 
minute details of coloming from all mine, but in so 
variable a species this is of no consequence. None of 
mine have any adventitious covering, except that the 
base was surrounded by a dense mucus, in which mud 
had become entangled. This mucus is thrown off, I 


believe, by all Actinise, A. gemmacea in particular, 
round which it often hangs like a loose annular vest. 

Whether, however, there is any specific difference 
between it and C. viridis of Prof. Allman, I have 
strong doubts. I should not hesitate to say there is 
none, but for Prof. Allman's personal opinion on the 
specimen submitted to him by Mr. Thompson, and 
for Mr. Peach's figure published by Dr. Johnston 
(Brit. Zooph. p. 35) in which all the tentacles have 
hi-glohose heads. 


A little Actinia, which though it does not present 
all the recorded characters of A. alba of Mr. Cocks, I 
was at first disposed to refer to that species, occurred 
to myexplorings during the very low spring-tide of 
October 16th, in two localities. Both were on the 
surface of rocks near the extreme low-water ; the one 
was an overhanging, the other a perpendicular surface. 
In both cases the animals were social; in the one case 
I found three individuals associated, in the other 
many dozens, a large colony thronging the sides of a 
narrow fissure or chasm, just wide enough to get into, 
that runs far up the rock at the seaward base of 
Capstone Hill. Even here many of the specimens 
were hanging from beneath the little points and 
projecting ledges. 

Its consistency is very soft and yielding, somewhat 
resembling, in this respect, another social Anemone, 
that I had found in similar circumstances the day 
before, Corynactis Allmanni. It is easily detached. 


as it does not inhabit holes or crevices ; nor is its 
body indued with gravel, or any extraneous substances. 
When put into a vessel of water it very readily expands 
its large conical tentacles, and dilates its disk to the 
utmost ; and though, on being touched, it will par- 
tially contract, it unfolds the instant the annoyance 
ceases, and is presently full-blown again. 

None of the specimens that I saw exceeded about 
half-an-inch in height, and the same in expanse. 
There is scarcely any variation in their colouring. 
They are ribbed longitudinally with many opaque white 
lines and bands, differing in breadth, that traverse 
the ribs ; these lines are separated by interspaces, 
always narrow, of pale, semi-pellucid brown or drab. 
The margin is sometimes slightly tinged with reddish- 
brown. The oral disk is opaque-white, marked with 
five pellucid radiating lines. The mouth and lips are 
also pure white. The tentacles are arranged in three 
or four irregular rows, and are graduated in size, those 
at the interior row being much the largest, and the 
exterior ones the smallest. They are all opaque 
snowy-white, without the least appearance of bars or 
rings, except that the very base of each is encircled 
with a narrow ring of dark purplish-red or brown? 
which passes off in a line behind the tentacle. Some- 
times this ring is obsolete, except around the base of 
the twelve largest tentacles that form the innennost 
circle, where I think it is never wanting. The lips 
are capable of being inflated and protruded to an 
immense extent. 

None of my specimens have any yellow spots on 
the lips, nor the least trace of the minute tubercles 


which Mr. Cocks speaks of, as surrounding the mar- 
gin of his A. alba in three rows. Hence, considering 
also the well-marked dark ring emhracing the tentacle- 
bases, I am inclined to dOubt whether the present 
may not he an undescribed species. Should it prove 
such, I would propose for it the name of Actinia 

Plate YIII, fig. 1 1 represents this species of the 
natural size, contracted ; fig. 12, the same, magnified ; 
fig. 13, with the disk expanded. 

The (so-called) ovarian filaments are protruded from 
the pores in various parts of the body with great readi- 
ness by this species on the slightest irritation. They 
are slender, white, and highly ciliated, so as to move 
freely with apparent spontaneity. On being subjected 
to pressure, they were found to contain a number of 
filiferous capsules quite amazing ; I should think it 
by no means a hyperbole to presume that many mil- 
lions of these ofi'ensive weapons are wielded by one 
Actinia. As usual, they exhibit diff'erent models of 
structure, and different sizes. (See Plate XXVIIL, 
figs. 21 to 27.) 

The largest are longo-elliptical, or oblong, slightly 
enlarged towards one end; -^th inch in length, and 
3^th in width ; a linear cylindrical body passes down 
through the centre, which seems to pervade the whole 
length, but becomes evanescent towards the posterior 
end. (Figs. 21, 22.) The thread when propelled is 
quite unique ; it is not more than \\ times as long as 
the capsule ; and is armed, except at the basal third, 
with a dense brush of bristles, pointing in a reverse 
direction, and thus constituting so many barbs. (Fig. 


24.) I had noticed that the tentacles of this species 
were more than usually tenacious : whether this quality 
may he owing to the harhed armature of the filiferous 
capsules, I will not certainly say, hut I think it not 

The small capsules are of a similar shape (fig. 23), 
hut are not more than y^th inch in length ; and they 
propel a thread, which, with the microscopic power 
that I use, appears simple, to the length of -^th inch, 
or six-times that of the capsule. (Fig. 25.) 

The tentacles do not, so far as I have seen, contain 
any large capsules ; nor are the small ones present in 
extraordinary number. The larger, j^th in. long, are 
long- oval, a little curved, and permeated hy a clear, 
cylindrical body throughout their centre. (Fig. 26.) 
The smaller are more linear, fg^th inch in length, 
with a central evanescent line, that appeared zig- 
zagged, or perhaps spiral (fig. 27) ; but the minute- 
ness here precluded a satisfactory resolution. The 
same reason, probably, prevented my seeing the struc- 
ture of the emitted thread ; but the similarity of 
appearance between the central column of the larger 
tentacular capsules, and that of the largej ovarian 
capsules, suggests a similarity of structure also, 

I cannot help thinking, from facts already recorded 
in these pages, that the filaments which are so freely 
shot forth by most Actinioi from pores scattered 
over their whole surface, are neither seminal nor 
ovarian ducts, but offensive weapons. In all cases 
in which I have examined them, they are filled more or 
less densely with filiferous capsules, and those the 
most elaborately armed. Why should seminal or 

p 2 


ovigerous ducts be shot forth by the animal at 
various points when irritated ? 

The following is a List of the Zoophytes that I have 
found during the present season (from May to October 
inclusive) in the neighbourhood of Ilfracombe. It 
may be useful as a guide to other naturalists who may 
hereafter visit the place. 

Clava multicornis. — Near Watermouth. 
Coryne ramosa. — Tunnel Rocks, &c. 
sessilis. — Capstone base. 
Cerherus. — Capstone. 
stauridia. — Ilfracombe. 
Sertularia rosacea. — Wildersmouth Beach (dead). 
argentea. — Wildersmouth Beach (dead). 
ahietina. — On Oysters from Lee. 
jmmila. — Smallmouth. On Corallina offic. 
Plumularia setacea. — Tunnel Rocks; Santon Rocks. 
pinnata. — Smallmouth. 
cristata. — Capstone. 
Antennularia antennina. — Hele; on a Crab. 
Laomedea gelatinosa. — In a rock-pool at Capstone 

gejiiculata. — Tunnel Rocks ; on Tangle. 
ohliqua. — Tunnel Rocks, extreme low-water. 
Campanularia voluhilis. — Santon ; Smallmouth. 
Alcyonium digitatum. — Tunnel Rocks. 
Carijophyllia Smithii. — Tunnel Rocks ; Small- 
mouth ; extreme low-tide. 

Balanophyllia regia. — Tunnel Rocks ; extreme 


Corynactis Allmanni. — Tunnel Eocks ; extreme 

Actinia mesemhryanthemum. — Wildersmouth. 

Candida. — Fissure at Capstone base. 

anguicoma. — Smallmouth. 

gemmacea. — Wildersmouth ; Smallmouth ; 

crassicornis. — Wildersmouth; Tunnel; Hele. 

hellis. — Capstone base ; Tunnel. 

nivea. — Wildersmouth. 
Anthea cereus. — Tunnel ; Compass Hill ; Hele. 
TubuHjJora Jlahellaris. — Eock-pool at Hele, on 

Crisidia corniita. — Hele ; on Delesseria sang. 
Crisia denticulata. — Hele ; on Algie. 

geniculata. — Tunnel Rocks; roots of Tangle. 

eburnea. — Tunnel Rocks ; Hele. 

aculeata. — Capstone ; in a rock-pool. 
Eucratea chelata. — Capstone base ; Hele. 
Anguinaria spatulata. — Tunnel ; Hele ; on Algce. 
Lep'alia spinifera. — Tunnel ; on roots of Tangle. 

coccinea. — Capstone base. 
Membranijjora pilosa. — Everywhere; on Algce. 
Cellularia avicularia. — Capstone ; in a rock-pool. 

ciliata. — Tunnel Rocks ; Watermouth. 

reptans. — Wildersmouth Beach (dead). 

Hookeri. — Smallmouth. 
Flustra foliacea. — Wildersmouth Beach (dead). 

chartacea. — Tunnel Rocks ; very low tide. 
Alcyonidium hispidum. — Lee ; in caverns. 
Cycloum papillosum . — Tunnel. 
Beania mirabilis. — Capstone ; in rock-pool. 


Valkeria cuscuta. — Hele ; on small Algce. 

pustulosa. — Barricane ; in a deep pool. 
Bowerhankia densa. — Wildersmouth ; on a small 

Pedicellina echinata. — Smallmouth . 

Belyica. — Tunnel ; Hele ; on Algm^ and on 

gracilis. — Capstone ; on Corallines. 

And here ends the record of a delightful season 
spent on the Coast of Devon. I suppose it would be 
quite superfluous to assure my readers that it ivas 
delightful, that the whole of the nine months, ill 
health notwithstanding, was one continuous, un- 
flagging holiday. I wish that the perusal of these 
pages may awaken in any, even a few, of my 
readers, a relish for similar pursuits, and induce 
them to drink of this ever flowing stream of pure 

It has indeed been delightful to read page after 
page of God's hook of nature ; and though I am con- 
scious that the study has not been, so much as it 
might, a pathway to Himself, yet the impress on all 
of His hand, who is our Father and our Saviour, has 
added a keener edge to the enjoyment. It is sweet 
(to use the words of a dear friend,) to feel no stranger 
to the great Architect, to feel the friendship of a 
blood-redeemed and reconciled sinner with that glo- 
rious Being, the Maker and Sustainer of all things ; 
to be able to come into his presence, to speak to Him, 
to anticipate a yet far deeper acquaintance with Him, 


to know that ''this God is our God for ever and 
ever !" Blessed revelation ! that has opened such 
springs of sweet and lasting joy in the wilderness of 
a sinner's heart ! 

" If music, with its mysteries of sound, 

Gives to the human heart a heavenward feeling ; 

The beauty and the grandeur which are found 

Wrapping in lustre this fair earth around. 

Creation's wondrous harmonies revealing, 

And to the soul in truth's strong tongue appealing. 

With all the magic of those secret powers, 

Which, mingling with the lovely band of light, 

The sun in constant undulation showers 

To mould the crystals, and to shape the flowers. 
Or give to matter the immortal might 

Of an embracing soul — should, from tliis sod. 

Exalt our aspirations all to Grod."* 

" For of him, and through him, and to him are 
ALL things ; to whom be glory for ever. Amen." 

* Hunt's " Poetry of Science," 162. 


Marine Vivaria. (See p. 228, et seq.) Since the former 
note was written in September last, on the keeping of 
marine animals alive in unchanged Sea-water, I have 
continued the prosecution of experiments on the same 
subject, with the most gratifying results. Actinise of 
different species and other interesting animals, brought by 
me from Devonshire, are now living in the highest health 
in London, some of which have been in confinement 
nearly eleven months. 

The following facts may be considered as established- 
Marine animals and plants may be kept in health in glass 
vases of sea- water for a period of greater or less length 
according to circumstances, provided they be exposed to 
the influence of light. The oxygen given off by healthy 
vegetation under this stimulus, is sufficient for the support 
of a moderate amount of animal life; and this amount can 
be readily ascertained by experiment. 

But another element in the question soon obtrudes 
itself. The Actinise and other animals habitually throw 
off a mucous epidermis, and other excretions, which fall to 
the bottom of the vessel, or accumulate around them. 
The process of natural decay also continually goes on in 
the older fronds of the Algae. Here then there is a con- 
tinually increasing deposit of organized matter in a 
state of decomposition ; and after a while the presence of 
this substance becomes too manifest in the offensive odour 


which proceeds from the water, especially when it is dis- 
turbed, and in the feebleness, disease, and final death of 
the animals. 

In this difficulty chemistry came to my aid. Professor 
Schonbein had proved that phosphorus possesses the 
curious property of causing water and hydrogen to unite so 
as to form a new compound, the peroxide of oxygen, which 
he calls ozone ; and that ozone then immediately re-acts 
upon the phosphorus, and oxidates it, producing the jdccu- 
liar light called phosphorescence. In like manner he had 
suggested that the luminosity of the sea is dependent on 
the particles of organic matter being brought into contact 
with the atmosphere. The phosphorus of this organic 
matter causes the union of the atmospheric oxygen with 
the water so as to form ozone, which immediately oxidates 
and destroys it. 

What then is necessary but the presentation of the 
water, so charged with organic matter, to the atmosphere 
in a minutely divided state ? This I did, and found the 
objectionable qualities of the water at once removed, and 
my difficulties vanished. I even took sea-water, contain- 
ing animal matter in suspension, so putrescent as to be 
highly offensive, and after passing it through the air in a 
slender stream a few times successively, the water was 
restored to purity. 

Another advantage is secured by the same process, 
viz. the aeration of the water. For though the requisite 
oxygen may be supplied by the agency of the plants alone, 
the mechanical admixture of the atmospheric air with the 
water by artificial aeration is highly conducive to the 
health and comfort of the animals, as is evident from 
their vigour and increased action under its stimulus. 

Should any of my readers wish to see these experiments 
in operation, or to cultivate a personal acquaintance with 
many of the individual specimejis whose history has been 


recorded in the preceding pages, they may do both by 
visiting the Zoological Gardens in the Regent's Park. The 
able and zealous Secretary, D. W. Mitchell, Esq., has 
already set up one large glass tank, filled with sea-water, 
(the purity of which is maintained in the manner I have just 
described,) and stocked with marine plants and animals 
so as to resemble one of those charming tide-pools, so often 
mentioned in these pages, with the advantage of having its 
sides formed of plate-glass, and its whole contents there- 
fore clearly visible. There the visitor may see the Sahellce, 
the Actinia of brilliant hues and many kinds, Mollusca both 
shelled and naked, Crustacea, and Anjiellida, all pursuing 
their various avocations and enjoying themselves without 
restraint, under circumstances scarcely distinguishable 
from those of nature. All who have seen this aquarium 
concur in considering it a most attractive exhibition ; and 
it is fairly anticipated that when seven other tanks of 
equal dimensions are added to the one ah'eady stocked, 
each containing some of the numerous tribes of marine 
creatures (a result which we hope to accomplish in the 
course of a few months), the whole will form one of the 
most unique and interesting features of these beautiful 

But my attention has been directed to the realization of 
such a desideratum as I have before mentioned (See p. 234, 
ante) a Marine Aquarium for the Parlour or Conservatory. 
An apparatus for this purpose has been for some time in 
the manufacturer's hands ; and though there are some 
minor difficulties attendant on the mechanical part of the 
execution, they are not such as to throw any material 
doubt on my confident expectation, that in a short time an 
elegant vase stocked with algae and sea-anemones, and 
comprising within itself the elements of its constant self- 
purification, will be before the world. 


Acorn Shells, 23 ; 206. 

-^quorea, (glassy), 340 ; 345. 

(Forbesian), 343 ; described, 345 ; luminosity of, 346. 

(Forskal's), 347. 

Anemone, (Smooth) ; 9 ; 10 ; poetical allusions to, 11 ; 17. 

• (Purple-spotted), 430 ; described, 431. 

(Daisy), 24; 25; difficulty of procuring, 26 ; change of 

its form, 27 : description of, 27 ; varieties of, 
31 ; habits of, 32 ; 55; structure of, 32. 

(Thick-horned), 34 ; probably identical with ^.cortacea, 

36 ; habits of, 38 ; cooked and eaten, 150. 

(Rosy), 90. 

(Snowy-disked), 93 ; habits of, 95. 

(Snake-locked), 96. 

(Gemmaceous), 108 ; described, 168 ; young of, 170. 

Animals, On keeping in unchanged sea- water, 228 ; 439. 

Animalcules, luminous, 253 ; parasitic, 260 ; 291 ; 359 ; 367. 

Annelida, 10; 94; 172; 275; 391. 

Anstey's Cove, 70 ; animals of, 71. 

Anthea described, 15 ; habits of, 17 ; white variety, 18 ; table 
qualities of, 153; stinging powers, 267 ; power of retrac- 
tion, 268 ; thi-ead- capsules, 268. 

Antiopa, crested, 325 ; spawn of, 326. 

Aquarium, marine, 229 ; 439. 

Ascidia, a transparent ; 241 ; larva of, 322. 

Babbicombe, 5; 11 ; prospect from, 68. 

Barricane, visit to, 322 ; shell-beach of, 323. 

Bathing-pool, 344 ; 397. 

Beach, process of its formation, 266. • 

Beania, 205 ; 225. 


Birds, songs of, 45 ; 69 ; 107. 

Bloody-field, 327. 

Boulders, baiTen of animals, 9. 

Bowerbankia, 205. 

Braunton, fertility of, 281 ; legend of, 281. 

Burrows, 283 ; botany of, 285 ; animals of, 286. 

Bristle-tail, 389. 

Brixbam, visit to, 44 ; appearance of, 46 ; its natural history, 47. 

Brittlestars, 56 ; 206. 

Campanularia, structure of, 297 ; egg-vesicles, 298 ; medusoid, 299. 

Caprella; 82; 379. 

Capstone Hill, 102 ; 129 ; description of, 159 ; prospects from, 162 ; 
164; spout-holes, 320. 

Care of God over his creatures, 67 ; 144 ; 201 ; 207 ; 302. 

Cam-top, 279 ; legend of, 279. 

Caverns, 293; 294 ; 397. 

Cellularia, (ciliated) cells of, 144 ; bird's heads of, 146. 

(bird's head), 195 ; cells of, 198 ; polype of, 199 ; 204. 

Chondrus, iridescence of, 188 ; 382. 

Chrysaora, 364 ; eye-prisms of, 366 ; parasites of, 367 ; light of, 
368 ; beauty of, 368 ; mode of taking prey, 369 ; of 
ovipositing, 373; eggs, 374; thread-capsules, 376. 

Circulation, in Alcyonium, 80 ; in Laomedea, 149 ; in Tunicate 
MoUusca, 240. 

Clava, 206. 

Compass-hill Bay, 393 ; legend of, 394. 

Corallme, 204 ; white light of, 226. 

Corynactis, 423 ; its locality, 423 ; varieties of, 424 ; structure of 
424 ; mode of feeding, 426 ; colours, 426 ; thread- 
capsules, 427 ; habits of, 429. 

Coryne (branching), 190 ; generation of, 194. 

(sessile), 208. 

(three-headed), 222. 

(slender) 257 ; tentacles of, 259. 

Crab, habits of, 174. 

Crewkhorne Cave, 397 ; legend of, 397. 

Crisia, 205. 

Cycloum, 157. 

Dead-man's fingers, 76 ; 94 ; beauty of its polj-pes, 77 ; structure 
of, 79 ; circulation in, 80 ; spiculse, 81. 


Devonshire, claims of, 2; beauty of its scenery, 3; 104; lanes of, 
4 ; 305 ; rocks of, 107 ; 307 ; 329 ; 396 ; wells 
of, 306. 

Disaster, a fatal, 166 ; 395. 

Doris, 12 ; 62 ; 71 ; habits of, 13 ; 59 ; spawn of, 14. 

Doto, 83. 

Economy in Nature, 202. 

Eolis coronata, 12. 

despecta, 82. 

papillosa, 12; voracity of, 16. 

exigua, 83. 

Epitaph, curious, 282. 

Eucratea, its mode of growth, 133; 141 ; structure of, 134 ; ana- 
logy with Kotifera, 139 ; ciliary action, 139. 
Exploit, a gallant, 309. 
Feather-star, 56 ; its habits, 57. 
Fishing, Mode of, 106. 

Flowers, 104; 107; 172; 263; 270; 280; 284; 292; 327; 339 ; 
Flustra, fleshy, 276. 
Galathea, 71. 

Glory of God in Creation, 248 ; 354. 
Grantia, 235. 

(ciliated) 238. 

Hangman Hill, 265 ; legend of, 272. 

Hele, 104; 130 ; legend of, 130 ; pools of, 141. 

Hillsborough, 129 ; etymology of, 261 ; described, 262 ; fall 

of, 266. 
Hockey Lane, 104. 
Ilfracombe, beauty of, 101 ; View of, 128 ; 129 ; Tunnels of, 397 ; 

Zoophytes found at, 434 ; Farewell to, 436. 
Jackdaws, 8 ; 105. 
Johnstonella, 356. 
Kestrel, 8 ; 310. 
Landslips, 266 ; 293. 
Langley Open, 271. 

Laomedea, (angled), 82 ; medusoids of, 84 ; mode of growth, 84 j 
89 ; luminosity, 252. 

(slimy), 148 ; circulation in, 149; polype of, 149. 

Lee, beauty of, 176 ; 273 ; in a shower, 304. 

Legends, 46 ; 130 ; 166 ; 272 ; 279 ; 281 ; 308 ; 327 ; 340 ; 394 ; 397. 

Lepralia, 204 ; metamorphosis of, 218. 

Q 2 


Light, influence of upon colour, 42 ; produced by animals, 250 ; 
253 ; various effects of, 412 ; ode to, 415. 

Lime Light, 226. 

Limestone, honey-combed, 23. 

Lion Rock, 130 ; 155 ; 423. 

Lobster's Horn, 313 ; secondary cells, 314; generation of, 315; 
development of stem, 316. 

Madrepore (Smith's), locality of, 103 ; 108 ; 127 ; 132 ; skeleton 
of, 110 ; resemblance to Actinia, 112 ; the fleshy struc- 
ture, 113; beauty of, 113; tentacles of, 114; 116; 
ciliary action, 115; modeof feeding, 117 ; reproduction 
of parts, 120; the frilled bands, 121 ; thread -capsules, 
123 ; aggregated specimens, 127,. 

(Scarlet and gold), 399 ; locality of, 400 ; 404 ; beauty 

of, 400 ; characters, 401 ; 404 ; skeleton, 403 ; thread- 
capsules, 402. 

Marychurch, visited, 3 ; farewell to, 100. 

Medusse, mode of procurmg, 332; 349 ; luminous, 335; 346. 

structure of, 335; 341 ; 364; generation of, 353 ; 368. 

^Ruby, 348; motions of, 351; habits of; 369; 409; 

disease of, 409. 

Fairy's cap, 387. 

Medusoids of Polypes, 84 ; 299; 331. 

Microscope, difficulties of, 184 ; charms of, 197. 

Morte Stone, 308. 

village, 309; legend of, 309.- 

Oceania, tiny, 384. 

Oddicombe, 6 ; 21 ; 54. 

Pedicellina, (Belgian), 158; 205; 210; structure of, 210; gene- 
ration of, 213. 

(spined), 217. 

(slender), 217. 

Pelagia, "white, 378. 

Petit Tor, prospect from, 5 ; cove of, 7 ; the promontory, 
21 ; 33. 

Pholas, habits of, 62 ; respiration of, 63 ; siphonal tubes, 64 ; their 
tentacular extremities, 65. 

Pipe-fish, described 179 ; habits of, 180 ; disease of, 183. 

Pleurobranchus, described, 71 ; habits of, 73 ; shell, 75. 

Plum.ularia, (crested), 82. 

(bristle) 311 ; generation of, 311. 


Plumularia (feather) 287 ; generation of 288. 

Polycera, 13 ; 222. 

Polynoe, 391 ; weapons of, 392. 

Pomeroy family, legends of, 46. 

Pools in rocks, 6 ; 10; 24; 34; 39; 54; 93; 141; 187; 324; 

330; 423. 
Prawn, habits of, 39 ; its beauty of colour, 41 ; changes, 42. 
Prospects, 5; 105; 162; 264. 
Purpura, 60 ; experiments with its dye, 61. 
Rapparee Cove, 338 ; legend of, 340. 
Respiration in MoUusca, 63 ; 240. 
Rock of Death, 308. 
Rockham Bay, 306. 
Sabella, beauty of, 417 ; mode of procuring, 419 ; reproduction of 

the crown, 421. 
Samson's Cave, 293 ; 333. 
Sand- worm, 171 ; dye of, 173. 

Saxicava. its boring powers, 23 ; its habits, 47 ; 93. 
Scallop Painted, beauty of, 47 ; the mantle, 48 ; eyes, 49, 52 ; 

spins a thread, 50 ; the foot, 50 ; manner of leaping, 50 ; 

structure of the gills, 53. 
Score Valley, 280. 
Sea spider, 171. 
Sea- weeds, 24 ; 39 ; 55; 71; 94; 142; 188; 189; 204; 230 5 

324; 330. 
Sea-wonn, honeycomb, 275 ; 284. 
Serpula, 11 ; 63, 

Ship'^\T:ecks, 131 ; 274 ; 308 ; 340. 
Shrimp (Medusa), 367 ; metamorphosis of, 368. 

(Mantis), 379 ; its weapons, 379 ; its habits, 380. 

(Caddis), 382. 

Shore, charm of, 154. 

Smallmouth, Caves at, 294 ; animals of, 103, 296. 

Snake-head, 142 ; 205 ; cells of, 142 ; their door and hinge, 143. 

Sponges, 9; 94; 204; crystals of, 234 ; 238; 276. 

Sprmg, charm of, 68 ; 103. 

Squirrel, 22. 

Stone, a populous, 202. 

Stone-turning, a productive occupation, 178. 

Sunset, glories of, 161 ; 413. 

Syrinx, (Harvey's), 157. 


Thaumantias (hairy), 334; 344. 

(Busk's), 385. 

(Club -bearing), 407. 

Thread-capsules, of Act. bellis, 32 ; of A. anguicoma, 99 ; of 
Caryophyllia, 123 ; of Anthea, 268. 

suggestions respecting, 33 ; 124; phenomena of, 

123 ; 360 ; 407 ; 428. 

elaborate structure of, 125 ; 406 ; 427 ; 429. 

evolution of, 126, 407. 

of Medusse, 351 ; 360 ; 376; 410. 

of Balanophyllia, 402 ; of Act. crassicornis, 405. 

of Corynactis, 427 ; of Act. Candida, 432. 

Tor Abbey, 62. 

Torr Point, 328 ; 399. 

Torrs, 327 ; 397. 

Tracy, Tomb of, 310 ; legend of, 397. 

Trochus, 47 ; 62. 

Tubulipora, 227. 

Tunnel Rocks, 396 ; 423. 

Turris, Ruby, 348 ; generation of, 349 ; 353 ; thread- capsules, 

351 ; beauty of, 354. 
Vivaria, marine, 228. 
Walk, Summer morning, 269. 
Watcombe, wild scenery of, 58. 
Watermouth, 105 ; 172. 
White-pebble Bay, 329. 

Wildersmouth, 129 ; 155 ; 160 ; 162 ; described, 165. 
Willsia, 359 ; parasite of, 359. 
Woodlouse, 390. 
Woollacombe Sands, in a shower, 310. 



Mugii chelo, 106. 

Bleiinius, 56. 

Clupea alba, 369. 

Syngnathus 1 umbriciformis, 178. 


Doris tuberculata, 13, 14, 59,71. 

bilamellata, 12, 13, 62, 83, 


pilosa, 62. 

Johnstoni, 71. 

Polycera ocellata, 12, 13. 

quadrilineata, 222, 232. 

Doto coronata, 83. 

Eolis papillosa, 12, 16. 

coronata, 12. 

despecta, 82. 

exigua, 82. 

Antiopa cristata, 325. 
Pleui'obranclius plumula, 71. 
Patella \ailgata, 23, 276. 
Purpiu'a lapillus, 60. 
Trochus cinerarius, 119. 

ziziphiniis, 47, 62, 71. 

Littorina littorea, 23. 
Cypraea Europaea, 71. 
Pecten opercularis, 47, 71. 

distortus, 71. 

Anomia, 71. 

Mytilus edulis, 10. 

Saxicava rugosa, 23, 47, 65, 93. 

Pholas dactylus, 62, 63. 

parva, 62, 65. 

Botryllus, 71. 
Perophora Listeri, 241. 

Amaroucium proliferuin, 322. -J 
Balaniis, 23. 


Serpula, 11, 63, 71, 233. 
Sabella vesiculosa, 416. 
Sabellaria alveolata, 275, 284. 
Arenicola branch-ialis (?) 172. 
Polynoe cirrata, 71, 391. 

impar, 391. 

Phvllodoce lameUigera, 10, 232. 
Hirudo (?) 359. 
Johnstonella Catharina, 356. 


Cancer pagurus, 174. 
Maia squinado, 311. 
Galathea rugosa, 71. 

strigosa, 71. 

Palaemon serratus, 39. 
Hyperia medusarum, 367. 
Cerapus Whitei, 382. 
Capiella, 82, 379. 
Ligia oceanica, 390. 
Phoxichilus, 171. 


Machilis maritima, 389. 
Eristalis tenax, 390. 


Tubulipora flabellaris, 227. 
Crisidia cornuta, 435. 



Crisia denticulata, 232. 

geniculata, 435. 

eburnea, 435. 

aculeata, 205. 

Eucratea chelata, 132, 206, 226. 
Anguinaria spatulata, 142, 205, 

Lepralia spinifera (?) 204. 

cocinea, 218. 

Membranipora pilosa, 222, 232. 
Cellularia aviculatia, 195, 204, 


ciliata, 144. 

reptans, 435. 

Hookeri, 435. 

Flustra foliacea, 435. 

chartacea, 400. 
Alcyonidium hispidum, 276. 
Cycloum papillosum, 157. 
Beania mirabilis, 205, 225. 
Valkeria cuscuta, 436. 

pustulosa, 436. 

Bowerbankia densa, 134, 205, 

Pedicellina Belgica, 158, 205, 
210, 232. 

echinata, 217. 

gracilis, 217. 


Comatula rosacea, 56. 
Ophiocoma neglecta, 56. 

rosula, 71. 

minuta, 207. 

Asterina gibbosa, 62. 
Echinus esculentus, 71. 
Syrinx Harveii, 157. 


Chrysaora cyclonota, 364. 

Pelagia ? 378. 

Willsia stellata, 359. 
Turris neglecta, 348, 410. 
Saplienia Titania, 387. . 
Oceania pusilla, 384. 
^quorea vitrina, 340, 345. 

Forbesiana, 345. 

Thaumantias pilosella, 334, 344, 

Thaumantias Buskiana, 385. 

(?) Corynetes, 407. 

NoctUuca miliaris, 253. 


Clava multicornis, 206. 
Coryne ramosa, 190, 232. 

sessilis, 206, 208. 

Cerberus, 222, 259. 

stauridia, 257. 

Sertularia rosacea, 226. 

argentea, 434. 

abietina, 434. 

pumila, 434. 

Plumularia setacea, 143, 311. 

pinnata, 287. 

cristata, 82, 143, 311, 

Antennularia antennina, 311, 

Laomedea gelatinosa, 148. 
geniculata, 39, 82, 

84, 252, 290. 

obliqua, 434. 

Campanularia volubilis, 296. 
Alcyonium digitatum, 76, 94. 
Caryophyllia Smithii, 103, 108, 

132, 226, 296, 400, 405, 424, 

Balanophyllia regia, 399. 
Corynactis AUmanni, 423, 430. 
Actinia mesembryanthemum, 9, 

10, 24, 232. 

Candida, 430. 

anguicoma, 96, 120, 232. 

gemmacea, 108, 120, 

168, 284. 

crassicornis, 16, 34, 59, 

92, 150, 405. 

- bellis, 25, 55, 59, 120, 


nivea, 93, 232. 
rosea, 90, 232. 
alba, 71. 

Anthea cereus, 15, 62, 120, 153, 
232, 267, 330, 418. 


Pachymatisma Johnstonia, 9. 



Halichondria panicea, 276. 

celata, 204. 

sanguinea, 204, 

Grantia botryoides, 234. 

ciliata, 238. 

nivea, 233. 


Halidrys siliquosa, 330. 

Fucus, 10, 55, 230, 

Laminaria digitata, 39, 82, 89, 

93, 230, 252, 330. 
saccharina, 6, 39, 

55, 330. 
Taenia atomaria, 325. 
Cladostephus yerticillatus, 324. 
Polysiphonia, 188. 
Dasya arbuscula, 132, 188. 
Laurencia pinnatifida, 25. 
Chylocladia arliculata, 25. 

Corallina officinalis, 10,54,188, 

204, 226. 
Delesseria sanguinea, 39, 71, 

94, 188, 230, 232. 

hypoglossmn, 142. 

Nitophyllum laceratum, 227. 
Plocamium coccineum, 24. 
RhodjTnenia ciliata, 25. 

jubata, 232, 330. 

palmata, 10 ; 55, 


palmetta, 24. 

Cbondrus crispus, 55, 188, 230, 

232, 382. 
Iridsea edulis, 39, 71, 94, 230. 
Ptilota sericea, 188, 189, 204. 

plumosa, 232. 

Ceramium, 24, 188. 
Bryopsis plumosa, 204, 
Ulva, 55, 188, 230, 232. 
Enteroraorpha, 230, 





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